The Information Technology Department is responsible for all aspects of technology for Alexander County. IT staff work with each of the 31 County Departments to determine their technology needs and provide assistance in meeting technology goals in the areas of computerization and communications. IT staff are always looking for ways to make technology work for Alexander County and provide more access to county government for the citizens of Alexander County.
Specifically, the Information Technology Department components include; help desk support, centralized purchasing, hardware and software support, training, networking, system installation and repair, technology research and daily operations. In addition, the Information Technology Department is responsible for maintaining the County’s E-mail system and world-wide-web presence. County Information Technology staff are also responsible for all telephone systems throughout the county departments and creating content for social media outlets and PEG (Public, Education & Government) access channels.
The Alexander County Information Technology Department maintains a 5 mile fiber optic Wide-Area-Network connecting ten County facilities and forming the back-bone of the County’s telecommunications infrastructure.
Currently, the backbone connects the County Administration building with the Senior Center, Department of Social Services, Health Department, Library, Tax and Register of Deeds, Courthouse, Cooperative Extension, Board of Elections, Catawba Valley Community College – Alexander Center and the Law Enforcement Center.
In addition to the fiber optic network, the Information Technology department maintains several network connections to remote facilities throughout the county via cable modems, wireless communication networks, DSL modems and leased data circuitry.
Primary uses of the Wide-Area-Network include; high speed access to the Internet, connections to various State and Federal Governmental Offices, client-server applications, web based applications, Geographic Information Systems data, E-mail, Public Internet Access located at the Library and the sharing of computer information from one department to another.
In addition to the WAN, the County’s Information Technology Department supports 19 Local-Area-Networks within the different County buildings. These systems, consisting of copper and fiber optic cable and are utilized to connect the individual County employees’ PC’s with one another and to the Wide-Area-Network. The Information Technology Department is responsible for the planning, installation and maintenance for all these infrastructures and the equipment necessary to make them work.
Alexander County utilizes a variety of platforms including Windows based servers and IBM AS400. Currently the Department supports 40 Windows Servers, an IBM AS400 system and a UNIX server. In addition, the County maintains approximately 400 PC’s running Windows Operating Systems.
These systems utilize a host of software applications including; Word Process, Spreadsheet, Database, Imaging, Cataloging and software enabling staff to access mainframes located at the State and Federal level.
The County Information Technology staff provide installation, maintenance, training and repair for all platforms and software throughout the County’s 31 departments.
Alexander County creates and stores vast quantities of information and data some of which must remain confidential. The Information Technology department is charged with securing this information from both internal and external threats. IT staff utilize a host of different technologies to assure that information is not access by unauthorized individuals through several means including; virus protection programs, firewall applications, proxies and monitoring software. As new threats develop, staff make necessary changes in the County’s security methods to address these issues.