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A violent storm knocked out power and telephone service to the Vienna, Va., headquarters of Navy Federal Credit Union early Tuesday, shutting down the institution's main call center and access to online banking for several hours. When northern Virginia's electric utility, Dominion Power, lost service in the Vienna area, the credit union's disaster-recovery system kicked in, starting four 1,000 kilowatt back-up generators and shutting down the credit union's mainframe computer that serves 150 branches worldwide, Jennifer Sadler, a credit union spokesperson, tells CardLine. The credit union transferred core processing tasks to its back-up data center in Winchester, Va., she says. But the storm also disrupted phone service in northern Virginia, which meant credit-union members could not call in to ask questions or initiate transactions by telephone for several hours. "It took a while to switch our phones down to our remote call center in Pensacola, Fla.," Sadler says. The 3.1 million members of the credit union still could use their credit and debit cards, access cash from ATMs and conduct transactions in person at credit-union branches, Sadler says. Staff members reviewed the integrity of account data and had all systems repaired and operating by the start of business on Wednesday, she adds. "We were able to maintain the safety and integrity of our member data, which is first and foremost," Sadler says. "All that worked according to plan."

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