Protecting the data center

Protecting the data center

Protecting the data center is a huge undertaking. Disgruntled employees can wreak havoc causing losses of data that can have huge implications on a company's bottom line. While many company executives are concerned about outside incursions to the data center, a Forrester report quoted in the Huffington Post said that 36 percent of all data breaches occur from inside the facility.

Mistakes or malicious?
The Forrester Report showed that 25 percent of company executives surveyed said they experienced a malicious attack from an employee. The employee security mistakes made were from surfing the internet and bypassing existing security protocols while downloading emails. Forrester also discovered that 58 percent of employees had not participated in company security training measures and had little to no idea that what they were doing could compromise system protections.

Not just in the private sector
One would think the federal government would have all their employees trained and practicing solid security protocols but a survey by MeriTalk, a public/private IT partnership that monitors the fed's IT actions, found that 66 percent of federal employees think security is restrictive and time-consuming. Thirty-one percent admitted to working around established security protocols at least once a week. 69 percent added that the government's security restrictions often adds time to their daily tasks and cuts down on productivity.

Breaches caused by lack of compliance
The MeriTalk report interviewed a number of security professionals in the federal government who stated almost half of the non-malicious security breaches were because employees did not comply or utilize existing security on the system. Could a different type of protection using a different technology assist both the government and private sector executives in preventing security breaches?

Biometric technology can help
Keeping unauthorized personnel out of critical areas is a task security personnel everywhere take very seriously. Using new technologies to keep ahead of criminals can help avert a disastrous breach which would cause significant downtime and loss. Biometric access control, the use of fingerprint scanning, is now considered a safer alternative to traditional key and passcode technologies. Cybersecurity professional, Tom Ruff, told the Federal Times, though, that better protections, while vital, need to be more user-friendly.

"It is a team game, and better support for users will deliver better results for security," Ruff explained.

Software developers have made fingerprint scanning easy and cost effective. A simple scan of a employee's fingerprint entered into a data base creates an non-duplicable file. When an employee wants access to the data center they must touch a fingerprint reader. If there's a match the employee gains access.

This methodology allows security professionals to keep the data center safe and secure from any internal threats that may be looking to compromise vital data systems or gather data to sell on the black market. The technology is also easily teachable to staff and is not at all difficult to operate.

The fed has also been looking at employing biometric security in a number of different operations they conduct. Airport security and defense operations are just two areas the fed is working with the biometric technology, according to Nextgov, a federal information source for IT executives..

In the private sector deploying biometric security technology allows company managers to have complete control over who gets access to vital operational areas and who can actually enter the company facility. With access control provided by biometric technology, companies will be using the best technology available to maintain a solid bottom line free from any unplanned and devastating downtime created by employee mistakes and criminal malfeasance at a non-prohibitive cost.

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