Maricopa County Securing Vital IT Systems


The Maricopa County Recorder’s Office – located in Arizona – has built a modern virtualized IT environment to hold over 49 million documents and 185 million images, including the county’s voter registration information.


The Recorder’s Office processes and preserves deeds, plat maps, and other vital documents. The office serves an average of 3,000 to 5,000 individuals daily, handling an estimated one million records each year. In total, the county has more than 49 million searchable documents and 185 million images, dating back to 1871.


To meet the state’s statutory requirements and ensure that all records – especially voter information required for fair, accurate, and transparent elections –are secure, the office needed a modern, high-performing, and cost-efficient solution with the latest security safeguards was required.


“These records are key components to the services the county provides to residents,” Nathan Young, IT director in the Maricopa County Recorder’s Office, said in a statement.


He added that the office decided to create this high-performing environment by utilizing a VMware virtualized environment that’s tightly integrated with Dell PowerEdge servers and PowerStore all-flash, NVMe storage.


The new system provides fast retrieval from multiple streams of data simultaneously and cuts retrieval times in half, so constituents aren’t left waiting to get what they need, Young said.


The office leveraged PowerStore’s built-in data protection and cyber resilience to safeguard critical information and protect against growing risks from cyber threats. In addition, the Recorder’s Office decreased costs by significantly reducing its data center footprint.


“We leveraged PowerStore’s compression technology to reduce our old storage area network from as much as 20U, down to just 2U – 90 percent reduction in footprint,” Young said. “[We] eliminated the power and maintenance costs associated with an entire server room that we shut down.”


In addition, the Maricopa County Recorder’s Office has been able to innovate to meet changing demands from constituents as well as the increased expectations of staff. For example, the office’s new solution ensures that individuals can find whatever they need in seconds.


The unified IT environment created by the office also leverages PowerEdge servers to simplify workloads, improve responsiveness and accuracy, and provide a high level of security to ensure that essential systems and data are protected against ransomware and other potential cyberattacks 24/7.


Having reliable, scalable computing is especially important because of the role the recorder’s office plays in elections, according to Young.


“We might not devote much computing power to elections for months, and then we’ll quickly have to ramp up to 200 times what we would typically run daily,” said Young. “Having PowerEdge servers allows us to scale compute resources as needed while saving on energy and rack space.”


Young added that the office’s newfound “partnership lets us leverage the latest Dell Technologies solutions to serve our constituents faster and more reliably while keeping our records as secure and accurate as possible.”