centre of attention Unsung Hero Not all heroes wear capes. Timothy Arnold, colo technology director at Six Degrees Group, discusses how the data centre is the unsung hero in our ever increasing age of data. T he volume of data we create is growing at a dramatic rate, and it’s not slowing down anytime soon; by 2025, IDC predicts that the ‘global datasphere’ will be 10x the size it is today, rising to 163 zettabytes. The Internet of Things (IoT) and Big Data are key drivers behind this explosive growth and healthcare, energy and manufacturing businesses – to name but a few – are utilising this huge increase in consumer and industry intelligence 10 | October 2017 to drive revenue and enrich customer experience. To support this acceleration in data creation and to maximise the opportunities it generates, businesses of all sizes need to plan ahead and build flexibility and security into their IT estate. For most this means implementing a cloud solution, be it public, private or hybrid, to ‘host’ virtual infrastructure, or migrating on- premises equipment to a third party. Ultimately, however, these cloud and ‘off-premises’ solutions have to live somewhere; in data centres. The growth of data and cloud across all industries – Gartner predicts that the public cloud market alone will grow by 18% in 2017 – combined with issues of data sovereignty and the impending GDPR legislation, means that it’s crucial for the ‘work horses’ – the data centre facilities – to be secure, resilient, scalable and agile. So, what does this actually mean?