Nevada unveils info-sharing system

Nevada state government

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Several state and local governments and agencies in Nevada are participating in a new project that would allow them to share backup and systems recovery technology.

Gov. Kenny Guinn unveiled yesterday the Nevada Shared Information Technologies Services (NSITS) project, which is being touted as a first-of-its-kind model to allow agencies to participate in shared-use facilities. State officials said this could be replicated nationwide to boost computer security.

“As we learned from the [Hurricane] Katrina disaster, computer systems caught in the middle of such a catastrophe are prone to failure,” Guinn said in a statement. “A system that allows government agencies to share critical information will go a long way to assuring that information is not lost.”

The state government, Clark County, the city of Las Vegas and the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department are participating in NSITS, but the initiative will be open to other public-sector entities. Officials will commission a feasibility study to examine implementation alternatives by September.

“Shared-use facilities hold the potential to improve the security of data by eliminating unneeded transmission links and standardizing security formats between the partners,” Terry Savage, the state’s chief information officer, said in a press release. “This will result in better protection of citizen and taxpayer information.”

Officials said the project would enable agencies to become more efficient and would increase scalability, saving money and capitalizing on their information technology assets.

“The need to collaborate is created by our rapidly expanding state and by our advancing need for computer security and computers for emergency functions,” Metro Deputy Chief Dennis Cobb said in a statement. “Currently, these functions are handled by the individual entities, but increasing demand and tighter requirements of homeland security officials are pushing IT departments into partnerships.”

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