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RECORDS AT RISK; LIEBERT STUDY SHOWS MOST COMPUTERS UNPROTECTED AGAINST BLACKOUTS

 RECORDS AT RISK;
 LIEBERT STUDY SHOWS MOST COMPUTERS UNPROTECTED AGAINST BLACKOUTS
 COLUMBUS, Ohio, Aug. 28 /PRNewswire/ -- Despite 1990's Hurricane Hugo, 1989's San Francisco Earthquake and this spring's Great Chicago Flood, six out of 10 computer sites have no UPS (Uninterruptible Power Supply) equipment installed to preserve data in the event of a sudden power outage.
 That's according to a survey conducted by Liebert Corporation, Columbus, Ohio, the world's largest manufacturer of UPS systems. The data were taken from Computer Intelligence data base and phone interviews with computer users around the country.
 "If I were CEO or chief financial officer of a corporation, I'd be pretty concerned that important documents and records in my company were at risk after reading this data," said Jeff Sturgeon, a Power Products marketing manager for Liebert. "I'd want to know what they were doing to plan for some unexpected blackout or power emergency, especially during the summer storm and blackout season."
 An Uninterruptible Power Supply is a power back-up system that provides a smooth, steady stream of electrical power to sensitive computers and electronic control systems. Power blackouts, brownouts, or sudden voltage spikes that cause even a millisecond of power interruption to a computer could instantly erase data on screens or even on computer disk files. Significant amounts of accounting and personnel records have been wiped out when unprotected.
 In manufacturing firms, unprotected production control electronics are susceptible to shutdowns. Marek Samotyj, a power quality expert at the Electric Power Research Institute, Palo Alto, Calif., estimated a manufacturing line shutdown caused by interrupted power can cost up to $200,000 an hour.
 "Even a one-tenth of a second sag can cause a downtime incident in a big factory," said Samotyj.
 Of the 86,000 computer sites included in the research, just 35,000, or 40.7 percent, indicated they have a UPS system installed for computer protection. Even in the mainframe market, usually supervised by MIS and computer professionals, just 55 percent of the mainframe sites included in the data had installed UPS systems on the large mainframe computers that house their vital company documents - 7,255 sites with UPS installations, out of a total 13,121 sites.
 "Power protection is similar to buying insurance or seat belts - human nature leads people to assume that 'tragedy only happens to others, not to me,'" said Sturgeon. "But the risks are well documented, and stories are commonplace of engineers who lost software development work, authors losing manuscript drafts, and accounts payable records erased. Just as the home security industry sells burglar alarms to people after a break-in, computer users typically are most ready to buy UPS power protection after a catastrophic incident."
 Sturgeon noted that the decrease in the cost of computing can be a mixed blessing that should raise warning bells for corporate executives.
 "Computers used to be the sole responsibility of MIS professionals who were most likely to act on the technical need for computer power protection," he explained. "But, the trend in computers toward lower cost systems has created a proliferation of small networks outside the 'glass room' of the MIS department, to engineering, research, marketing and other areas that may not be as aware of the need to protect important files and operations from power disruptions."
 Indeed, among the smaller mid-range systems included in the Liebert research, only 40.6 percent of sites incorporated UPS power protection, compared to 55 percent for MIS department mainframes.
 The presence of power disruptions are well documented, said Sturgeon. Bell Laboratories studied 24 of its sites over a two year period and found that voltage sags occur an average of once a week. A 1991 study by National Power Laboratory showed over the course of a year 443 power disruptions - sags, spikes and interruptions - in a typical electrical line feeding into a computer.
 What can the computer and electronics user do to guard against unwanted attack by power lines? Sturgeon identified several solutions:
 -- surge protectors weed out the vast majority of voltage spikes and sags and offer an inexpensive solution for the isolated PC that doesn't contain data crucial to the company.
 -- power conditioners represent the next level of power protection, used to guarantee a "clean" supply of power to electronic equipment.
 -- an on-line UPS uninterruptible power supply covers all types of power interruptions. It provides clean power with no sags or surges, and contains battery back-up in the event of a sudden outage.
 For more information, contact Liebert by calling 800-877-9222, or by writing Liebert Sales Support Services at 1050 Dearborn Drive, Columbus, Ohio 43229.
 Liebert Corporation is the world's largest manufacturer of power protection equipment. A subsidiary of Emerson Electric Co., Liebert pioneered the development of computer support systems. In 65 countries, its products and systems condition power and guard against power outages, control temperature and humidity, and monitor and control access to critical space.
 -0- 8/28/92
 /CONTACT: Dave Crago of Liebert Corporation, 614-841-8185/ CO: Liebert Corporation ST: Ohio IN: SU:


BM -- CLFNS1 -- 4223 08/28/92 07:31 EDT
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Date:Aug 28, 1992
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