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Moving water-damaged servers could take several months, says government spokesman

cna central servers
Photo source: CNA

Moving government servers damaged by a leak could take a few months a spokesperson from the deputy ministry of research, innovation, and digital policy said on Wednesday, a week after many state webpages were downed by the incident.

The spokesperson from the ministry said that the IT services department and Cyta, where the servers were meant to be moved as per a cabinet decision back in November 2022, are currently in talks to establish a timetable for their [the servers] transfer.

According to the deputy ministry there are intensive procedures underway, aiming to set timetables before the end of April.

The ministry said that the transfer of the servers from the finance ministry must be done correctly and not spasmodically, which means it can take a few months to move them.

Cyta will need to first record what is on the servers to transfer them properly, the ministry official said.

The ministry added that the transfer of the servers is just the first step in the implementation of a memorandum of cooperation signed with Cyta.

The MoU concerns the creation of an international data centre for government services, the ministry rep said.

In the meantime, while the servers remain at the finance ministry, to ensure that they are not exposed to risk, the water tank that caused the leak which resulted in the damage to the servers, will remain empty.

According to the representative, the failure caused minor damage and now the servers are working smoothly.

Commenting on the incident last week, President Nikos Christodoulides said that the blame for the server disruption belongs to his government, and that he would not blame others for the failure to move the servers that were downed.

Responding to journalists’ questions on the matter, the president said: “What I have been informed about is that the servers were placed at this particular point in 2001 by the IT services and they were placed there because in 2003 the IT department was part of the finance ministry. It [the IT department] was transferred to the deputy ministry of research after its establishment, but in November 2022 a recommendation of the cabinet for a memorandum of cooperation with Cyta that would also concern these data centres in general was passed.

He said that he also he would be informed by the deputy minister Philippos Hadjizacharias later in the day.

Christodoulides also expects to be informed about the progress of relocating the servers.

Asked if the matter of transfer to Cyta is possible, the president said that so far, based on the information he has, it can be done.

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