Beaver Dam Seeking To Bolster Computer Security

(Beaver Dam) The Beaver Dam Administrative Committee Tuesday night approved a contract with Interquest to provide security for the city’s computer systems. The Beaver Dam-based company would install software and actively monitor computers belonging to around 100 employees.

Initially, Interquest would provide the service for every city department except for the recreation department and the library, which have the newest systems in the city and are currently covered. The goal would be to eventually have one company monitor all department’s IT security needs.

Interquest would be paid a one-time fee of $5000 and a monthly fee of $2000, through the end of the current budget. The money for the remainder of the year would come from unspent funds intended to provide computer security for the Finance Department. The cost would then be included in the next fiscal budget.

Bill Schwartz of Interquest told the committee that his company conducted a free audit of city IT security and found several red flags. Interquest drew up a plan that would allow the city to bid out the entire project or bid IT security for each individual department.

Alderman Dave Hanson indicated that he prefers one company provide security for each city department. Hanson says Interquest is the right choice because they have experience with the city’s technological infrastructure and their costs for service is comparable to other potential vendors.

“The big thing we’re going to have to swallow come budget time,” Hanson says, “is what our needs are going forward.” The city reportedly has a lot of outdated hardware and software, specifically operating systems that are nearly obsolete.

Alderman Ken Anderson cast the lone dissenting vote. He says there is a need and that while the project may not need to be bid out, he feels the city should do more due diligence by getting more perspectives on solutions. “There’s a definite need but I think we need to explore all options,” Anderson says.

Interquest already provides a variety of tech services to various city departments. The resolution now heads to the full common council for consideration.