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NSA data centre brings 300 million daily security scares to its Utah home

The State of Utah has the worst ... tenant ... ever

Utah is being hit with up to 300 million security incidents a day, the state's public safety commissioner says.

He complains that the undefined "incidents", the bulk of which are likely automated scans, have skyrocketed since 2010 when the number of incidents peaked at 80,000 a day.

Commissioner Keith Squires told local broadcaster KUTV he suspected the increase is thanks to construction of the National Security Agency's major data centre in the state.

"In 2010, my IT director was letting me know that the amount of attacks we would average in a 24 hour period were between 25,000 to 80,000," Squires says.

"We did have peaks in the past year or so that were over 300 million in a day.

"In my opinion the ultimate effort (of state actor attackers) was trying to get data that was national security related."

The state employs 20 personnel in its security team and charges them with sifting through the mass of security incidents. Picking the signal of a nasty attack from the noise of automated scans is among the team's chief concerns.

Most of those attacks originate outside of the US, Squires says, adding that traffic from China is blocked.

The US$1.5 billion (£1.1 billion, A$2.1 billion) NSA Bluffdale data centre, officially designated the Intelligence Community Comprehensive National Cybersecurity Initiative Data Center, was built May 2014 and is said to be capable of processing a litany of communications, allegedly including those of US citizens. ®

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