recommended reading

FBI Data Center Efficiency Program the Way of the Future?


The FBI is looking for a contractor to make its Criminal Justice Information System data center in Clarksburg, W.Va., process data and burn energy more efficiently, contracting documents show.

If the pilot proves successful, the FBI may consolidate programs and services from less efficient data centers into the Clarksburg location, which could become a model for data centers across the FBI and the Justice Department, according to the solicitation posted Monday.

The government is three years into a massive campaign to consolidate software and services from outdated centers into a smaller number of sleeker, more efficient centers or into private-sector computer clouds.

The FBI solicitation reflects a recent shift in methodology from federal Chief Information Officer Steven VanRoekel to focus less on reducing the raw number of government data centers and more on reducing energy and data costs from centers that remain. The solicitation’s statement of objectives includes detailed specifications for how servers must operate, how much energy they can burn and technology that should be used to measure and reduce energy waste.

Because of the FBI’s work with classified and law enforcement information, its consolidation process is likely to be more complicated than for some other agencies.

The Government Accountability Office has been increasingly critical of VanRoekel’s office for losing focus on the data center consolidation initiative and for not forcing agencies to comply with reporting requirements. GAO information technology chief David Powner has praised the focus on energy efficiency but warned that efficiency alone won’t yield savings if the number of data centers isn’t reduced drastically.

There are more than 6,000 federal data centers, according to the most recent estimates. They range from the size of a small closet to that of a football field.

VanRoekel and Powner are scheduled to testify about the consolidation initiative before the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Thursday morning. 

(Image via digidreamgrafix/

Threatwatch Alert

Thousands of cyber attacks occur each day

See the latest threats


Close [ x ] More from Nextgov

Thank you for subscribing to newsletters from
We think these reports might interest you:

  • Featured Content from RSA Conference: Dissed by NIST

    Learn more about the latest draft of the U.S. National Institute of Standards and Technology guidance document on authentication and lifecycle management.

  • PIV- I And Multifactor Authentication: The Best Defense for Federal Government Contractors

    This white paper explores NIST SP 800-171 and why compliance is critical to federal government contractors, especially those that work with the Department of Defense, as well as how leveraging PIV-I credentialing with multifactor authentication can be used as a defense against cyberattacks

  • Toward A More Innovative Government

    This research study aims to understand how state and local leaders regard their agency’s innovation efforts and what they are doing to overcome the challenges they face in successfully implementing these efforts.

  • From Volume to Value: UK’s NHS Digital Provides U.S. Healthcare Agencies A Roadmap For Value-Based Payment Models

    The U.S. healthcare industry is rapidly moving away from traditional fee-for-service models and towards value-based purchasing that reimburses physicians for quality of care in place of frequency of care.

  • GBC Flash Poll: Is Your Agency Safe?

    Federal leaders weigh in on the state of information security

  • Data-Centric Security vs. Database-Level Security

    Database-level encryption had its origins in the 1990s and early 2000s in response to very basic risks which largely revolved around the theft of servers, backup tapes and other physical-layer assets. As noted in Verizon’s 2014, Data Breach Investigations Report (DBIR)1, threats today are far more advanced and dangerous.


When you download a report, your information may be shared with the underwriters of that document.