EMP Events More Than Just Political Hype; They Can Happen

With EMP attacks and other events becoming a topic of political debates, it could be tempting to dismiss them as merely sensational topics as some media outlets have done recently.

Here’s what a recent article on Fortune.com had to say about recent predictions about the potential of an EMP attack: “Senator Ted Cruz wants us to freak out about a new threat: Satellites over the eastern seaboard detonating a large electromagnetic-pulse that knocks out anything with a circuit board and results in the deaths of millions of Americans.” As it turns out, Cruz wasn’t the only one that came under scrutiny.

EMP Events More Than Just Political Hype; They Can HappenThe article went out to state that Rick Santorum and Ben Carson also proposed terrifying scenarios involving countries like North Korea building a weapon that could lead to a damaging electromagnetic pulse event.

While that type of weapon is possible, it’s extremely difficult to invent, according to Dr. Yousaf Butt, a senior research fellow at National Defense University.

Although weapons that could generate an EMP may not be on the horizon any time soon, the threat of electromagnetic pulses caused by natural events is all too real — especially when it comes to interfering with data center uptime, experts say.

According to speakers at a recent Data Center World conference, the data center industry is becoming increasingly aware of the possibilities of EMP interferences. “The common response is ‘it can’t happen,’” said Michael Caruso, director of government and specialty business development at ETS-Lindgren. However, “it can and will happen.”

The experts said that although EMP attacks have not been common, critical points could cause such an attack to be catastrophic. The common theme? With data centers becoming increasingly important, providers must step up in pushing for the regulation of utilities and protecting data contained with their facilities.

The experts pointed to several complications that could lead to problems — including issues with electrical reliability in the midst of a solar storm.

An increasing number of data centers are being designed to guard against EMP events by providing a layer of protection through shielded electrical infrastructure, as well as structures that protect generators, and power and cooling.

Lifeline Data Centers is devoted to developing innovative solutions to protect its clients against unexpected downtime. EMP attacks are among the threats Lifeline Data Centers has taken into account as part of its recent innovative security measures. Contact us to learn more. We’re looking forward to hearing from you.

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Alex Carroll

Alex Carroll

Managing Member at Lifeline Data Centers
Alex, co-owner, is responsible for all real estate, construction and mission critical facilities: hardened buildings, power systems, cooling systems, fire suppression, and environmentals. Alex also manages relationships with the telecommunications providers and has an extensive background in IT infrastructure support, database administration and software design and development. Alex architected Lifeline’s proprietary GRCA system and is hands-on every day in the data center.