Tandem Computers Inc., maker of fault-tolerant computers often used by banks, has forged an alliance with Sungard Recovery Services to provide disaster-recovery services and products for its customers.

Tandem, the Cupertino, Calif.-based hardware vendor, will refer its clients to Sungard, to help them back up their operations in cases of emergency. The two companies, which have long worked together informally, also plan to jointly develop products to enhance their current services.

Many of the country's largest banks - including Citicorp and First Chicago Corp. - use Tandem's computers to run their automated-teller networks and sustain other systems critical to the operation.

Need for Protection

The alliance is expected to provide increased security and stability to banking operations, in light of recent disasters such as the floods in Georgia and the earthquake in California. Unnatural events, such as last year's World Trade Center bombing in New York, also underscore a need for financial institutions to protect their operations.

"For the last five years, we've received a great many requests from customers about getting into disaster recovery," said Bert Davis, a program manager for Tandem.

Sungard offers its customers alternate computing facilities, and also reroutes automated service and other phone lines to th4 back-up site in case of disaster.

The servicing company, head. quartered in Wayne, Pa., also backs up the data on tapes. As one of their projects under the alliance, Sungard and Tandem plan to provide "electronic volting" - transferring the data directly to the backup site without having to place them on tape.

At Bankers Trust and Investments, in Des Moines, Iowa flooding last year forced the bank to move its trust accounting and bond-processing systems to Sungard's Atlanta hot. site for two and a half weeks said JeriLe Henry, the vice president and manager of the trust and assessment operation there.

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