The US government plans to shut down 800 of its 2000 computer data centers over the next four years. The New York Times reports that the 40% cutback will allow the federal government to reduce their technology budget and to update their systems. The change could mean saving $5 billion a year, according to chief information officer Vivek Kundra, as the centers scheduled to close are “redundant systems.”
This will likely mean the elimination of tens of thousands of jobs, which could lead to backlash from the public, but the purpose of the changes is to save money and update the systems. The government is already saving expenses by using cloud-based email. The General Services Administration now uses Google services, and the Agriculture Department uses a Microsoft cloud service, which has saved the government more than $40 million per year.