RICHMOND (AP) -- Government contractor Northrop Grumman has agreed to spend $4.7 million as a result of a massive computer failure that cut off some state services for days last year.

An external audit done at Gov. Bob McDonnell's request blamed the company for the August crash of the Virginia Information Technologies Agency that affected at least two dozen agencies.

Secretary of Technology Jim Duffey said in a statement Thursday that Northrop Grumman will provide monthly invoice credits to the state over the next two years totaling $1.9 million.

The company will spend $2.1 million for system and network improvements. It also will pay for data-protection technology and address other recommendations at a cost of about $750,000.

Previously the company paid $250,000 for the cost of the audit.

Governor Bob McDonnell said in a press release Thursday, 'We are committed to holding all state contractors accountable for the performance of their duties on behalf of the Commonwealth and its citizens. Northrop Grumman will pay the full costs incurred by the state during last year's outage. In addition, the company will pay to put in place new procedures and systems to ensure, to the greatest extent possible, that a similar outage does not occur in the future.

On August 25, 2010, the failure of a key hardware component owned and operated by Northrop Grumman at the state data center -- and subsequent delays in restoring operations -- caused a significant impact to the operation of several state agencies. These delays had an adverse effect on the citizens of the Commonwealth and resulted in unexpected expense to state agencies. Outages related to the disruption impacted 13 percent of the Commonwealth's executive branch file servers and 26 of 89 executive branch agencies, including, most visibly, the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles. Of those 26 agencies, 16 reported a financial impact due to the outage.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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