Controller urges Philadelphia to get head out of — and data into — the cloud

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    Philadelphia’s controller says it’s time for the city to get its head out of the clouds and its data into the cloud for backup.

    The city is doing a poor job backing up critical computer data, said Alan Butkovitz, city controller.

    “The city doesn’t have a formal plan for recovery of technological services in the event that there is a major disruption, such as an extended power outage or system crash or even hacking,” he said. “That affects the water-billing system, health and welfare, the taxpayer-payment system, payroll, pension and the main financial accounting system.”

    The city’s systems are more secure than this time a year ago, according to Philadelphia’s chief innovations officer Adel Ebeid, who said his office is working to make sure the system is backed up.

    “For all the mission-critical systems in the city, we are doing our due diligence to make sure and working with the agencies to establish the right disaster recovery and redundancy systems in place,” Ebeid said.

    And, said Ebeid, funding is always a factor when it comes to making the necessary changes.

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