Ravens Get a Makeover

By Chris Preimesberger  |  Posted 2007-01-28 Print this article Print

Ravens Get a Makeover

As a result of Hurricane Katrina, the NFL offered a workshop on disaster preparedness for its teams after the 2005 season. The NFL recommended each team update its disaster contingency and recovery plans with data replication and off-site storage solutions. All the teams assessed their IT disaster preparedness and either upgraded or fine-tuned their systems.

The Baltimore Ravens, whose home city is located in an area on the Eastern seaboard that could very well be hit by a hurricane, decided to do more than just fine-tune their own storage shop. They opted for a complete makeover. A bold decision was made: The club would not handle any of its data on-site anymore.

The Ravens decided to outsource the care and keeping of all its business information, including customer, sales, human resources, accounting, e-mail, and document data-everything except the stacks of videotapes the coaches use to evaluate talent and prepare for future opponents.

In October 2006, the Ravens entrusted their mountain of business information to online storage and security specialist AmeriVault, of Waltham, Mass. The Ravens now simply pay a monthly fee for the service based on the number of gigabytes being stored.

To read more about companies that don't want to outsource their storage, click here.

Gone are the tape backup machines that used to archive everything in-house until an armored truck would come and transport tape cassettes to a secure off-site location-sometimes never to be seen or used again.

To the naked eye, nothing has changed in the Ravens' offices. Staff members and coaches still use their desktop and laptop computers to sign up new season-ticket holders, deal with the media, communicate with potential draft choices, produce payroll, pay contractors and handle all the other day-to-day duties of running a professional football franchise.

Nonetheless, AmeriVault has completely changed the way data is handled and stored within the franchise.

As a provider of managed online backup, e-mail archiving and recovery solutions, AmeriVault has clients in 44 states and 14 countries.

The company delivers services under stringent security controls and employs 24/7 system monitoring; redundant firewalls; dual-access circuits; and replicated, remote storage vaults for high-service availability. AmeriVault has four offices and five data vault centers around the United States.

Next Page: Risky business?

Chris Preimesberger Chris Preimesberger was named Editor-in-Chief of Features & Analysis at eWEEK in November 2011. Previously he served eWEEK as Senior Writer, covering a range of IT sectors that include data center systems, cloud computing, storage, virtualization, green IT, e-discovery and IT governance. His blog, Storage Station, is considered a go-to information source. Chris won a national Folio Award for magazine writing in November 2011 for a cover story on Salesforce.com and CEO-founder Marc Benioff, and he has served as a judge for the SIIA Codie Awards since 2005. In previous IT journalism, Chris was a founding editor of both IT Manager's Journal and DevX.com and was managing editor of Software Development magazine. His diverse resume also includes: sportswriter for the Los Angeles Daily News, covering NCAA and NBA basketball, television critic for the Palo Alto Times Tribune, and Sports Information Director at Stanford University. He has served as a correspondent for The Associated Press, covering Stanford and NCAA tournament basketball, since 1983. He has covered a number of major events, including the 1984 Democratic National Convention, a Presidential press conference at the White House in 1993, the Emmy Awards (three times), two Rose Bowls, the Fiesta Bowl, several NCAA men's and women's basketball tournaments, a Formula One Grand Prix auto race, a heavyweight boxing championship bout (Ali vs. Spinks, 1978), and the 1985 Super Bowl. A 1975 graduate of Pepperdine University in Malibu, Calif., Chris has won more than a dozen regional and national awards for his work. He and his wife, Rebecca, have four children and reside in Redwood City, Calif.Follow on Twitter: editingwhiz

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