Newspaper article THE JOURNAL RECORD

Deeper Security: New Technology Protects Streams of Well Data

Newspaper article THE JOURNAL RECORD

Deeper Security: New Technology Protects Streams of Well Data

Article excerpt

TULSA - Oil and gas companies are moving toward broadband for remote connectivity because it offers greater security and a higher quality of service, a communications market observer said.

Tech companies offering data services to the energy sector have relied on virtual private network, or VPN, configurations to ensure the privacy and security for years.

The value of broadband is obvious: Companies want the always-on connectivity from remote sites that enables technicians to make decisions based on real-time data.

The remote connections allow energy companies to know what is going on at the well site 24 hours per day, seven days per week, said Kimberly Early, Well Optix sales and marketing manager.

Also, capturing data in the field cuts the chance for human error, said Jill Connors, spokeswoman for KVH Industries Inc., a Middletown, Rhode Island-based company that offers Internet, television and voice services via satellite to mobile users.

With newer extraction methods, it's essential that key people are able to analyze and monitor data in real time, Early said.

Virtual private networks are not disappearing, said Dallas P. Lee, sales manager with Edmond-based David Lee Marketing Inc. However, the broadband option is becoming more attractive because of a communications tool known as multi-protocol label switching, or MPLS, Lee said.

"In our experience, we have seen that VPNs eat up 20 percent to 30 percent of available bandwidth, so customers end up with slower data speeds," Lee said.

Multi-protocol label switching skirts that issue by avoiding the Internet, said Rick Driscoll, vice president of product and service with the KVH mobile broadband group. It is able to link any kind of business enterprise, Driscoll said.

"MPLS connects offices or an office to an oil platform, but it is over a private connection," Driscoll said. …

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