What’s the similarity between you and the three bears who had their breakfast hacked by Goldilocks? Porridge.
The bears sourced the oats, paid for them, transported them home, got them into the right saucepan, carefully managed turning them into a tasty breakfast dish, then distributed the porridge to the other bears who needed it. But then they left the door open. If you’re going through the same sort of hard work with your data, you need to be sure you haven’t made it easy for someone to sneak in and help themselves.
Taking care of your data demands more than a firewall and some anti-virus protection. Firewalls get burned. Anti-virus protection catches a cold. Suddenly hackers are running riot in amongst your data. So if you don’t know exactly where it’s stored, or how many copies of it exist, they could smash, grab and be gone without you even realising anything’s missing.
Do you know how many people have legitimate access to your data? Or how many of them really need to have? Do you know what their access points are, and what routes your data is travelling from one place to another?
If you’ve just thought: I don’t, but it’s not a problem, because I don’t work in the finance sector”, it’s time to think again. If you’ve just thought: I don’t, and it might be a problem, because I do work in the finance sector”, then it’s definitely time to think again. And fast.
Day-to-day data management
The more data you have, the harder it is to keep track of it and keep it secure. Even if you have the right tools, you still need to know how to use them effectively to organise, distribute, monitor and secure your constantly growing, constantly changing data.
It’s a problem. And it’s a problem that’s only going to get worse as more people have access.
Right now, you have a certain number of employees who really need to see the data. There are probably others who have access to the complete data set even though they really only need to see part, or actually don’t need to see it at all.
Yet let the wrong person see the wrong data, and the consequences hardly bear thinking about. (For a start, don’t think about what a fine of 4% of annual global turnover would do to your business.)
So how can you manage your data, make it accessible, keep it useful, but also keep it secure?
Putting it in perspective
On average there are two successful cyber attacks every week in every company. That’s not just an opportunist raid followed by a quick getaway. The average time attackers stay hidden on a network is over 140 days.
Imagine: almost five months of searching out additional vulnerabilities and stealing sensitive information, passwords – even documents.
Against this scale of threat, effective data protection demands a wider data management perspective.
A point-to-point solution provides protection up to a point. Literally. But for comprehensive protection you need a comprehensive understanding of where your data is coming from, how it’s organized, where it’s stored, who’s using it, and how. Only when you’ve got the full data picture can you start to think about the optimum data security.
Tools for the job
Using just one security tool can be like bolting the front door and leaving the back door open. On the other hand, using every available tool can be like using a sledgehammer to defend a nut.
By understanding your data, its use, and the people who use it, you can choose the most appropriate and effective access levels, tools or tool combinations for the application in question. Which could mean using anything from read-and-write access restrictions to data anonymization, and from encryption to masking or tokenisation.
Agile Solutions understands data in all its complex forms, and understands business in its varied use of data. So we understand how data security should be implemented across your business environment.
Data is the core of our business, the reason for our business, and what we deal with every day.
We can help you understand your own data, identify any data security weaknesses, and then – because we work with a wide range of partners offering a choice of solutions – help you make a pragmatic decision about the level of security you need and the best way to achieve it.
So if you want to be sure no-one’s looking at your data who shouldn’t be, let Agile Solutions look into it.