Computer-based criminal activity is not a new trend. It has been prevalent for several years. However, we cannot deny the fact that illegal activities such as data theft and misuse have become far more pervasive in the recent years. And in most cases backup data seem to be the main target of cyber criminals. There are several reasons for this: cyber criminals have recognized that data/ identity theft can be a lucrative business, confidential information is more easily available than ever in readily accessible storage devices, or there is not enough perimeter security.
Whatever the reason, cybercrime has been increasingly affecting the performance and productivity of companies. IT security is a matter of serious concern now, and companies are trying to adopt best practices to overcome this challenge. Here are some measures that you can take, to protect your company’s backup data:
- Integrate backup security measures with the rest of the infrastructure. Make storage security a part of the overall information security policy. Even if the storage security responsibility lies with the storage team, they should integrate their security measures with the rest of the infrastructure, physical and virtual, in order to build in-depth protection.
- Assess risk in terms of security. Ensure that a risk analysis of your entire backup process is done. Vulnerability management is crucial for every business and therefore it is essential to evaluate the backup methodology used by the company to identify security vulnerabilities in the process. For example, questions such as, can an administrator make copies of the backup tapes, are end-point devices easily accessible, and is there end-to-end custody for backup data, etc, need to be addressed to avoid security attacks.
- Modify your security approach. If you do not have a comprehensive approach, adopt one. A multi-layered approach to security works well in most cases. Add different layers of protection such as authentication with anti-spoofing techniques, authorization based on roles and responsibilities as against complete access, encryption for data to be stored or copied, and auditing, along with log maintenance and log analysis, to ensure traceability and accountability.
- Build awareness about data security. Communicate to your staff and managers, the risks involved in handling backup data and train them to abide by your backup security policies and regulations. Most often data loss is a result of ignorance or negligence of employees. If employees are made aware of the consequences of data leak, security lapses can be avoided to a large extent.
Secure data backup begins with formulating strategic policies. And implementing these policies requires proper planning and preparation. To fully protect a company’s critical data, complete control, continuous effort and constant monitoring are crucial. It’s important to understand that data security is as much a product of awareness, as it is an enforced directive. And it is your responsibility to create such awareness to ensure overall data protection.