Local News

City Outsources IT for Over $3M per Year

City Council approved an agreement on June 21 with Glass Box Technology, Inc. for information technology (IT) projects and services at an approximate monthly cost of $280,000, which works out to over $3.3 million per year. This agreement extends through June 2023; however, it could be extended through 2026 should the City choose to do so.

Screen shot from agreement with Glass Box Technologies.

The City began contracting out IT services to Glass Box in 2019, and has gradually increased its reliance on this private company to both upgrade and enhance the City’s IT infrastructure and to provide some IT services that were once done by City Staff. Currently Fullerton’s Police Chief Robert Dunn is the City’s head of IT.

According to the City’s check register of payments, Fullerton has paid over $5.4 million to Glass Box since 2019.

City staff recommended extending the City’s agreement with Glass Box “because of the need to continue citywide IT enhancements, the complexity of the information technology environment, and the need to actively monitor and respond to the constant threat of cyberattacks.”

Prior to contracting with Glass Box, Fullerton’s IT department consisted of three employees, an IT manager, and some services were contracted out.

Fullerton began outsourcing with Glass Box following a so-called “data breach” in which a local blogger obtained and published City information without the City’s permission. It was later determined that the “data breach” was not the result of hacking, but rather of lax City IT protocols. The City hired Glass Box to perform an audit/analysis of its IT.

Since then, the scope of work of Glass Box has increased to cover many city upgrades and functions. Chief Dunn told The Observer that it is the City’s goal to eventually bring IT functions back “in-house” but that this would likely not happen for a year and a half to two years.

To read the agreement with Glass Box, click HERE.

———————————————————————————————————————————————————————————

Protect local journalism – please subscribe to the print edition or online edition of the Fullerton Observer. All editions are free, but subscriptions keep us printing, distributing, and posting the paper.  Annual subscription is only $39/year. It only takes a minute – Click Here To Subscribe. Thank you for your support for the Fullerton Observer. Click here to view a copy of the print edition.

———————————————————————————————————————————————————————————

4 replies »

  1. Totally agree with that – there was no hacking problem. City should have kept our IT manager who did nothing wrong and instead fixed the internal error by another city employee that gave full access to everything in the drop box to a resident asking for public info. And then the ridiculous expensive “hacking” lawsuit against that resident who just opened a file with his name on it. Such a gigantic waste of money and negative affects on lives. But it is an ongoing $3 million-a-year boon to this company. Also our past system of keeping the website updated and navigable was better. Seems to have taken a severe turn downwards over the past couple years since we lost IT manager.

    • There are names attached to that $750,000 lawsuit: Fitzgerald, Flory, SIlva, Zahra and of course Domer. The beneficiary? Dick Jones, Esq.

  2. That “breach” was pretty expensive thanks to an unnecessary lawsuit . And all caused by the City Attorney and a couple of hubristic councilmembers.

    • I used to work in IT and 3mill for a small IT dept is outrageous, considering what they manage. That’s the issue with outsourcing , you have to pay that companies employees who don’t work for you. Now a better model of outsourcing would require this company to hire and pay local IT staff to manage the IT. I don’t know how this turned into a super breach but even if he was given access to a file in drop box, anyone with minimal IT knowledge can make that access a ) just for that file and b) read only. The non IT public would not even realize if they had further access and most wouldn’t even care. Sounds like a Karen started this expensive mess.