Tech Firms Aid Relief Efforts

By Jeffrey Burt  |  Posted 2001-09-14

Microsoft Corp. this week led a growing number of high-tech companies offering money, equipment and services to relief workers and companies in New York City and Washington following the terrorist attacks in those cities.

The software giant donated $10 million in cash and technical services, $5 million of which will be a cash donation to the "September 11th Fund" established by The United Way of New York City and New York Community Trust. The other $5 million will be in the form of technical services, including Microsoft Consulting Services, volunteer hours and software, to the recovery and relief organizations. (Click here for an eWEEK interview with Kevin Johnson, Microsofts senior vice president of U.S. sales, on the companys relief efforts.)

Cisco Systems Inc. donated $6 million to New York and Washington relief groups. "Ciscos goal is to support the work of the rescue workers, provide assistance to victims and begin the healing of the affected," Maideh Radpoul, director of corporate philanthropy, said in a statement.

Computer Associates International Inc. donated $2 million toward a fund to help New York children who lost a parent in the attacks, and is offering data restoration and computing services to affected city businesses.

Applied Materials Inc., which lost an employee in the crash of United Flight 175 into one of the World Trade Center towers, donated $250,000 to relief efforts and will match employee contributions up to $750,000.

Corning Inc. donated $200,000 through its Corning Foundation-half to the September 11th Fund, the other half to the Red Cross-and will match employee contributions.

WorldCom Inc. offered impacted businesses toll-free service and nationwide and global conferencing tools. It also offered office space, equipment and telephone services to the Red Cross.

IBM also offered emergency technical services, support equipment and facilities to government agencies and relief organizations.

Jerry Luftman, professor and director of graduate information systems programs at the Stevens Institute of Technology in Hoboken, N.J., and a vice president of the New Jersey chapter of the Society for Information Management, said the institute is offering temporary space to companies that dont have disaster recovery facilities. The school is also making volunteer student help available to companies that need it to resume data center operations.

Luftman asked that equipment vendors contact him to donate equipment as necessary. For more information, contact Luftman at (201) 216-8255 or

Also, because many data storage centers were located in the World Trade Center, Ziff Davis Medias IT department is offering to contribute temporary data storage services and space to help neighboring companies rebuild their data centers, a critical part of a companys operations.

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