Garfield County sheriff has a new e-mail bag | PostIndependent.com
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Garfield County sheriff has a new e-mail bag

John Colson
jcolson@postindependent.com
Glenwood Springs, CO Colorado

GLENWOOD SPRINGS, Colorado – Garfield County Sheriff Lou Vallario recently switched to a new, web-based e-mail system to make it easier to keep track of and retrieve e-mails, just as the county administration has done.

The two systems are separate mainly for security reasons and to cut down on problems his personnel encountered due to high traffic on the previous countywide system, according to Vallario.

The new systems involve the storage of e-mail messages on servers maintained by the MX Logic company, with its headquarters in Englewood.



“It’s the same system, actually,” said Vallario, explaining that the county’s main offices and the sheriff’s office previously used a single, unified system.

But high traffic volumes were becoming a problem for Vallario’s needs, he said, so he decided to split from the county and set up a discrete e-mail system for his employees.



According to IT (information technology) specialists with both the county administration and the sheriff’s office, the new systems replaced one that stored data on tapes and made searches for specific bits of information both difficult and time consuming.

Both systems still back up onto tapes, but now the user-based e-mail messages are stored on servers with “journaling” functions built in, that essentially capture all e-mails, Vallario said.

And since there is software built in to enable searches of the database, Vallario said, “It can make it much simpler” to find particular messages or documents.

He noted that, while the retrieval of e-mails will be much easier with the new system, there are privacy concerns and sensitivity of documents related to ongoing investigations that will result in the “redacting,” or blacking out, of certain types of information, even on documents deemed appropriate for public release.

“The bottom line is it’s going to be a lot easier to access,” Vallario said, which will save money in searches and cut down on response time for requests from such quarters as the public, attorneys and other governmental agencies.

The new system for the sheriff’s office, according to IT specialist Jerry Fields, went into operation in February.

The main county offices, which have been using MX Logic’s spam-filtering system for several years, also are moving to incorporate the archiving system as well, starting in June, according to IT manager Charles Zelenka.

The sheriff’s system cost approximately $50,000 for various types of hardware, consulting fees and other start-up matters. A three-year contract with MX Logic, for management of the searchable database and security services, came to $5,575, Fields said on Wednesday.

Zelenka, who was reached while out of town, said he did not have the exact figures for the county’s addition of the archiving software with him.

But, he said, “It was the least expensive way for us to pursue. It was very, very minimal” in terms of increased costs.

Contact John Colson: 970-429-9143


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