Bracing for Tornado Season: Is Your Data Protected?

Data recovery firm helps businesses brace for tornado season

Greg Blakely, left, business development, and Kurt Kraft, president, outside the bunker. Located in the metro area, this bunker operated by MIDCON Recovery Solutions stores client servers in a secure, tornado and earthquake-proof bunker-fortified facility. The building was designed with redundancies for power, communications and HVAC. (JIM BECKEL/THEOKLAHOMAN)

Greg Blakely, left, business development, and Kurt Kraft, president, outside the bunker. Located in the metro area, this bunker operated by MIDCON Recovery Solutions stores client servers in a secure, tornado and earthquake-proof bunker-fortified facility. The building was designed with redundancies for power, communications and HVAC. (JIM BECKEL/THEOKLAHOMAN)

Data Recovery Company Helps Others Prepare

Wednesday, April 10, 2019
by Paula Burkes
Business writer | The Oklahoman

It’s tornado season in Oklahoma; that time every year when my neighbor shuffles the beloved baby portraits of her kids from the mantle to the storm shelter.

For businesses, the seasonal fear, of course, is that they’ll lose their most precious asset: data.

Oklahoma City-based MIDCON Recovery Solutions has a precaution for that: two unmarked, double steel-reinforced, windowless concrete buildings in Oklahoma City and one in Broken Arrow in which the company hosts the data of hundreds of organizations — from energy and telecommunications companies to insurance agencies and banks. For $100 a month to several thousands of dollars, companies rent rack spaces of 1 ¾ inches to 200 square feet.

On Monday, I toured MIDCON's newest, northwest Oklahoma City data center, which was built in 2017.

Company president Kurt Kraft and business development officer Greg Blakely call the 8,000-square-foot center a "bunker," and it looks as much. Its concrete walls are 12 inches thick. And there's a grounding ring circling the roof, so that any lightning strikes are channeled down a pipe and into the ground away from the data inside.

The bunker meets Federal Emergency Management Agency 361 construction standards to withstand a direct impact of an Fs tornado, Blakely said.

"But more likely, it's power outages and floods at their business locations that impact most customers," he said. The bunker, he said, serves as backup, or co­location, facility for the data.

"It would cost businesses well over $1 million to build their own data centers," Blakely said. "So, leasing space is much more cost-efficient," he said. "Here, they can contract and expand as they need to."

Added Kraft, an industrial engineer who formerly worked for Lucent Technologies, "As soon as many companies build data centers, they become either too small or too big. Plus, it's like building a pool at your house," he said, "It's nice, but it won't increase your resell value."

I asked Kraft if "the cloud" removes the need for such data centers.

"We are the cloud," Kraft said. "The cloud is any computer not standing next to the primary data; there's nothing magical about it," he said. "Google, Amazon and others have data centers somewhere, though they may not be in Oklahoma," he said.

MIDCON bunkers are a 20-minute drive away for most customers, Kraft said. The company, he said, also offers business continuity facilities where displaced employees can set up temporary operations.

Eerily, entering the bunker was like stepping into a spaceship. There's two-stage security required at the main and inside doors, where employees and customers' IT staff must swipe customized fobs and also press their thumbs for bio-metric identification.

Inside, MIDCON conditions the power coming in from OG&E and gas tanks contain oxygen inhibitors to envelope flames in the event of an electrical fire. Cables from various internet providers enter through a "meet me" corner space and snake through the ground level of the data hall.

Data racks sit a foot off the ground. And in an adjacent mechanical room, generators with battery backup stand ready for emergencies and air conditioners pump cold air into the ground level, while the heat that the computers generate continuously is sucked back through vents in a drop ceiling.

In the outside plant are condensers and backup diesel-operated generators.

"If the bunker takes a direct hit, we can 'turtle-up,' or temporarily close the doors and ride out the storm," Kraft said.

"This is built to California-seismic level, with a continual concrete pour as one structure. So, the building can't fight against itself and bring itself down."

©2019 Produced by The Oklahoman.

Daniel Marand
Partnership offers secure storage for patient medical records

Wednesday, May 3, 2017 | by Paula Burkes



Q: What role does the Oklahoma Foundation for Medical Quality (OFMQ) play in Oklahoma?

A: OFMQ was founded in 1972 as a nonprofit organization dedicated to advancing health care quality in Oklahoma. We are a trusted resource for doctors and the larger health care community, and we optimize collaborative partnerships to improve health outcomes for patients and enhance support for providers.

Q: What are OFMQ's current priority projects?

A: The lack of an affordable, modernized medical records management system is a problem for physicians across Oklahoma. State law requires physicians to maintain and store all patient medical records for six years after they retire, close their practice or move elsewhere. Not surprisingly, many physicians struggle with how to comply with this mandate. Unfortunately, this can lead to less-than-ideal storage practices, like storing records in a nonsecure location or not following proper retention guidelines, and can create a liability for doctors. Further, current document storage options can be burdensome and inefficient for retired doctors who are required to access old medical records.

Q: What solution has OFMQ created for this problem?

A: Our organization has partnered with MIDCON Data Services to create a medical records management system that is secure, complies with all privacy regulations and is easily accessible for patients and authorized parties. Our program can accommodate file and EMR-based records.

Q: What does the OFMQ MIDCON partnership involve?

A: We provide secure, organized storage of both electronic and hard copy medical records in compliance with all state and federal privacy regulations, including HIPAA. We can work with physicians on record indexing and assist with the secure destruction of documents when required and authorized by law. We also manage all Release of Information requests for the records in our care.

Q: What are types of information requests are covered?

A: The most common requests include patient requests, continuity of care requests from medical facilities and physicians, law enforcement inquiries, records requests from government agencies and insurance companies and legal requests.

Q: How does this program benefit a doctor's former patients?

A: There is a reason state law requires retiring physicians to maintain medical records. Our program ensures the security and integrity for those records and makes files infinitely more accessible to patients and their current physicians. This additional information can give the current physician a more complete view of the patient's medical history and help the doctor make the most accurate diagnosis possible. All of this will serve to improve Oklahoma's health outcomes. Additionally, patients sometimes need past medical records for various reasons, like insurance issues, and our program will make these records easier for them to access.


High Five
Creation of a New System for Doctor, Patient Files

Oklahoma Foundation for Medical Quality (OFMQ) announced recently it has created a modernized medical records management system that will benefit doctors and patients alike.

Oklahoma law requires doctors to store and maintain patient medical records for no less than six years, but it does not provide guidance for complying with this mandate. Many physicians struggle with how to safely store and access these records which can lead to ill-advised storage practices and create significant liability for retiring doctors.

OFMQ has partnered with Edmond-based MIDCON Data Services to provide secure and streamlined patient medical record storage and retrieval for physicians who retire, close their practices or move elsewhere.

"When physicians retire or close their practices, they need a protected method for storing medical records that also provides convenient access for former patients and other authorized parties,” said Gregg Koehn, OFMQ CEO. "We have partnered with MIDCON to create a service that will be simple for doctors and user-friendly for patients.”

Whether file or EMR-based the new OFMQ program provides secure, organized storage of electronic and hard-copy medical records.

"The program complies with all state and federal regulations governing medical records, including HIPAA,” said Jan Webb, OFMQ case review manager. "Their facilities are secure and meet all HIPAA requirements while maintaining the highest levels of confidentiality and security.”

In addition to securely storing the documents, OFMQ manages all Release of Information requests for the records in its care. Such requests are common and can include continuity of care requests from medical facilities and physicians, legal requests, records requests from government agencies and insurance companies, patient requests, law enforcement inquiries and authorized third-party reviews.

Koehn said improved medical records maintenance will also benefit patients who need access to old medical files from a former doctor.

"Physicians aren’t the only beneficiaries of this service,” Koehn said. "A patient’s new doctor can have more immediate access to the patient’s full medical history in order to make the most-informed medical diagnosis. Patients will also benefit from quicker access to records that might be needed for a variety of purposes, like insurance issues.”

As part of the program, OFMQ can help physicians with record indexing to ensure any records that were previously misfiled are accurately corrected. MIDCON will also assist physicians with the destruction of records when required and authorized by applicable state and federal laws. Additionally, MIDCON’s facilities include space that allows authorized parties requesting to review records in person to do so in private.

"With our system, physicians can accommodate records requests regarding former patients in a secure and convenient manner for years to come,” said Randy Allen, MIDCON CEO. "MIDCON’s established and proven processes ensure legal compliance, security and confidentiality of medical records, which benefit physicians and patients.”

A nonprofit health care consulting services company, OFMQ has been committed to advancing the quality of health care and improving lives since 1972.

MIDCON Data Services is a closely-held, private data management and storage company.

High Five
MIDCON Recovery Solutions Breaks Ground on Oklahoma City Data Center in Quail Springs Business Park

New data center reflects shift by companies from a capital model to operational model to manage, secure, retain and store business critical information

Dobson Technologies Anchors New Center

OKLAHOMA CITY -- MIDCON Recovery Solution has started construction on a new 60,000 square feet secure data center facility in the expanding Quail Springs Business Park in northwest Oklahoma City, the company announced today. The new center will be the third data center owned and operated by MIDCON in Oklahoma. The company operates data centers in Tulsa and Oklahoma City.

When completed later this year, the new MIDCON data center will also include a self-contained office and business continuity section for companies requiring a single site, full-service disaster recovery solution.

“We have seen a lot of growth in our hosting, monitoring, managing and securing of data for every type and size of businesses the past three years, “ said Kurt Kraft, President of MIDCON Recovery Solutions. “In recent years, companies have made minimizing business disruptions from natural disasters a top business priority. There is a greater understanding of the importance of having a business continuity plan in place, ready to execute on a moment’s notice. For many, it has become a central part of their risk management plan.”

Kraft continued, “Every successful business continuity plan includes having a secure secondary location where employees can work when natural disasters rendered their primary offices unusable. As more and more companies deal with sensitive data to run their businesses, we are seeing a steady increase in demand for end-to-end business recovery solutions and services.”

The new Data Center will meet Tier IV standards required to survive the extreme weather conditions in Oklahoma. The reinforced structure is designed to withstand EF5 tornado and a significant seismic event.

“Many of our client companies operate 24/7/365 and expect 100 percent uptime and their equipment to survive any conceivable disaster. As an Oklahoma company entrusted to manage, secure and store data for a number of companies, our centers address the concerns of Oklahoma companies,” said Kraft.

In announcing the start of construction of the new northwest Oklahoma City Data Center, Allen reported Oklahoma City-based Dobson Technologies has signed an agreement to anchor the new operations.

“Dobson Technologies is not only a leader in information and communication technology solutions in Oklahoma, but it also recognized as a pioneer in the telecommunications industry in our country,” Allen said. “Since the new center will feature Dobson Technologies advanced fiber optic connectivity, companies located in the center will have additional telecommunications access to OneNet, a leading internet service provider operated by the State of Oklahoma. Dobson brings a lot to the table, and we are pleased to have them as a major tenant.”

“After evaluating several options to accommodate the growth of our company, it became clear contracting with a company specializing in the operation of data centers was the best business decision for us. Since MIDCON is an Oklahoma company who knew our requirements and has a solid track record, we decided it was better for our business to use the capital we would have ordinarily tied up building our own center to build new fiber optic infrastructure to help businesses and communities with digital connectivity, which is actually the core of our business. From our point of view, this is a win-win for both companies,” said Everett Dobson, CEO Dobson Technologies.

MIDCON acquired the property from Moriah Real Estate Company (MREC), a diversified commercial real estate and development company with offices in Oklahoma City. MREC retained an interest in the construction and development of the new date center, announced Randy Allen, MIDCON’s president and CEO.

“We are pleased to be involved with MIDCON on this project,” said Al Branch, President of MREC. “The need for data centers will continue to grow as businesses accelerate their use of the internet.”


MIDCON Inc. is a closely-held, private Oklahoma data management and storage corporation with deep expertise to help companies with business continuity and recovery solutions. The company operates four complementary divisions: MIDCON Recovery Solutions, LLC.; MIDCON Data Services, LLC.; MIDCON Seismic Data Brokerage; and MIDCON Property Management, LLC. The company’s extensive commercial real estate holdings include the design, development and construction of three secured date centers. we are transforming the data management business with a spectrum of affordable, reliable, accessible, secure and sustainable services and solutions.

About Dobson Technologies

For almost 80 years, Dobson Technologies has been the leader in providing information and communications services to Oklahomans. Beginning in 1936 with Dobson Telephone, we have

continually reinvented our products and services to remain on the forefront of advanced information and communications technology. Today, we offer statewide information technology solutions, telecommunications services and fiber optic solutions to Oklahoma communities.

About Moriah

Moriah Real Estate Company, "MREC" provides a platform for its investors to leverage the experience and success of the principals as private equity investors and managers in commercial real estate. Together the principals have over eighty years of combined experience in owning and managing a real estate investment portfolio that includes office, industrial, multifamily, hotel, retail and ground-up development in Texas, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Louisiana, Florida and Arkansas.

High Five
MIDCON Data Services Acquires Storage Assets and Facilities from Indel Davis, Expanding Reach in Houston and Tulsa Markets

Company expansion shifts greater focus on oil and gas
still practicing traditional record management

TULSA, Okla. (October 5, 2016) – MIDCON Data Services, a privately owned and operated data management and seismic brokerage company, announced today it has acquired the storage assets and storage facilities from Tulsa based Indel Davis. MIDCON will expand into Houston, bringing the company an opportunity to provide a different market services surrounding seismic data catered to the oil and gas industry as well as traditional records management and document storage. This acquisition also allows MIDCON to continue growth in Tulsa, obtaining new resources that will serve to enhance the company’s established presence in Oklahoma and increase the company’s ability to effectively and efficiently manage data tailored to this specialty sector.

"Indel Davis is known as a leading international distributor and carries a complete line of printing media for seismic well logging, CAD, architectural and engineering communities,” said Randy Allen, CEO, MIDCON Data Services. “The range of capabilities surrounding data management and seismic data insight Indel Davis offers aligns with MIDCON’s services. The acquisition of Indel Davis allows us to strengthen our presence in Tulsa while also expanding our services to Houston, enabling us to elevate our seismic data services to a larger market. We are eager to begin operations in Houston and are looking forward to continuing growth and expansion in Tulsa.”

Founded in 1991 as a seismic data management company for the oil-and-gas industry, MIDCON has grown into one of the largest data management and storage companies in the region with offices in Oklahoma City and Tulsa. While the company previously expanded to include data management for the financial, legal and retail sectors, oil and gas remains the company’s largest business sector.

“We understand the critical role data management plays in multiple industries. We offer data services that enable our clients to make educated decisions when it comes to their business and specialty sector. Oil and gas represents our largest sector and the acquisition of Indel Davis furthers our ability to assist and equip this industry with vital seismic intel,” Allen said.

Indel Davis Owner Gail Runnels said, “MIDCON was chosen by Indel Storage as its successor because of a superior customer satisfaction ranking, financial strength and the range of services

for clientele storage offered. We are certain they will carry on the high level of attention to client needs that we have given over the last several decades.”

“We are thrilled to welcome Indel Davis employees to our operations and look forward to adding their expertise in data management to our business,” said Trey Cole Director of Operations, MIDCON Data Services.


MIDCON Inc. is a closely-held, private Oklahoma data management and storage corporation with uniquely positioned divisions allowing the strength and experience of each business to support the growth of the others. The divisions are MIDCON Data Services, LLC.; MIDCON Seismic Data Brokerage; MIDCON Recovery Solutions, LLC.; and MIDCON Property Management, LLC.

High Five