In today’s society, computer usage is an integral part of our daily lives. For example, statistics show that 60 billion emails are sent every day (97% of which are spam). Likewise, an estimated 93% of all internet experiences now begin with a search engine. Because of these behaviors, many companies have wisely chosen to invest in onsite computer services, such as IT consulting or teams of computer repair technicians. For most businesses, this computer support is an invaluable service that helps keep operations running smoothly. But despite this, few likely expected information technology to be mentioned in the North Carolina governor’s State of the State Address.
And yet this is exactly what happened: on Wednesday, February 4, Governor Pat McCrory specifically called for the state of North Carolina to create a cabinet-level department of information technology. This proposition was part of McCrory’s overall plan to reorganize state agencies and handle issues that affect multiple departments, such as the need for advanced computer services.
Over the next two years, McCrory called for lawmakers to make a number of changes that called for better usage of IT services. He asked for the state legislation to focus on creating jobs, providing needed job training for both students and adults, connecting rural and urban areas through highway systems and Internet access, upgrading health and public safety sectors, and improving government efficiency. All of these goals could naturally benefit from improved onsite computer services, such as improved health resources and safer information services.
In response to the governor’s proposals, critics accused McCrory of failing to deliver promised savings and efficiencies. The Democratic House Minority Leader, Larry Hall, also said the state needs to focus more on teachers and the middle class, pointing out that many in the region were still struggling to access basic necessities, like school supplies. However, McCrory’s Department of Information Technology could be a wise investment in future safety: studies show that the federal government has suffered almost a 680% increase in cyber security breaches in the past six years.