The National Data Centers are one of the most important infrastructure components of the National Information Network. These Centers will be set up in Tehran and other cities across the country, and will house the various telecommunications and storage systems used by the Network and process all the information flowing across the Network. Critically, the Centers will provide the authorities with full access to the servers used by—and thus any content flowing across—the National Network.
In order to entice Internet providers and Web hosting companies in Iran to store their data in the National Data Centers (as opposed to private firms outside the country such as Google, Microsoft or Apple), the government is increasing the bandwidth of the Centers and thus the speed in which they can store and process information. Mahmoud Khosravi, managing director of the Telecommunication Infrastructure Company, stated, “Previously the network consisted of a 43 GB Cisco system but now it is capable of handling 470 GBs.” In a perhaps unintentional admission of the uphill battle the government is facing in convincing users of the “benefits” of the Centers, Khosravi continued, “Of course this network is like a new highway that might have only four cars moving on it and so we are trying to encourage operators to use this completely unbreakable network.”