Every company fears data loss by one of the many possible means, and you’re probably no different. Between crashing hard drives, malware, phishing attacks, and bad agents sniffing out server infrastructures for intellectual property (IP) that could be abused or profited from, every company should be at high alert when it comes to their data’s security.
That doesn’t mean, however, that you should be in a constant state of fear—there are some reliable solutions that help ensure your company’s data is kept safe.
We’ve written before about Business Intelligence 101’s movement toward becoming a managed service provider (MSP) through our Business in a Box and Modelworks offerings, and what that means for your business, but we’ve been light on details so far. Here’s how it works: We partner with Google, Microsoft, and NetSuite, each of which create incredibly reliable suites of business tools, in order to deliver the tools and reliability that you need to make your business more productive. But it’s more than that—through these offerings, BI101 becomes your cloud solution provider, doing all the hard work in migrating your software and services to the cloud. Once that migration is done, we are there for you, every step of the way, in the event anything doesn’t go the way you hoped.
This means there are two layers of security and expertise between your data and the rest of the world, or from being lost completely. Because BI101 partners with those three reliable offerings, we get to leverage all their economies of scale, the complexity and speed of their data centers, and their sophisticated security engineers. And because we operate as the MSP between these toolsets and a business, you don’t have to deal with a sometimes-difficult monolith that doesn’t specialize in customer service the way we do, with our 24/7 technical support.
And when it comes to data, the more layers of security, the better—especially if it also makes it easier for your employees to use collaborative tools.
A tale of two companies
Company ABC is currently doing most of their collaboration via an internal server infrastructure with a number of shared drives for different business functions: finance, engineering, HR, and so on. Aside from the occasional technical hiccup—a crashed server, a power outage—the system generally operates quite well, and allows the business to be more productive and collaborative in certain departments. Even though they have a full-time technician responsible for solving various issues, that person is overloaded with support tickets, and doesn’t have the time to do everything they would like for the sake of security.
Company XYZ has worked with an MSP to move their collaborative tools and data storage to the cloud for all the same business functions as Company ABC. This system also works quite well, and has the added benefit of not needing someone on-staff to deal with server outages or a crashed hard drive. They still have someone available to help employees with a Google Sheet or a certain function within NetSuite, but that person is also doing a number of other technical jobs.
If you haven’t heard about ransomware yet, you probably will soon—essentially, a hacker infects their target with software that encrypts that person’s hard drive using a key only the hacker knows, and then demands payment (usually via untraceable Bitcoins) in exchange for said key. According to a recent Symantec study, the use of ransomware increased by 35 percent in 2015 due to its profitability. Kaspersky has found similar trends—a 2015 study says, “Ransomware programs were detected on 753,684 computers of unique users; 179,209 computers were targeted by encryption ransomware.”
If a hacker can access one computer within the Company ABC infrastructure, it’s more than likely they’ll be able to access them all via malware or social engineering—a single ransomware attack on the HR networked drive, for example, would cripple the business, and likely force them to pay up, hoping the hacker will release their data. Because all their data is in a centralized location, directly connected to the intranet and all its connected devices, it’s vulnerable from an enormous number of angles.
Company XYZ’s individual employees are equally open to ransomware, and employees should be trained adequately on the risk and how to mitigate it. But, because their data is with an MSP and a cloud service provider, the potential damage is severely limited. The hacker might be able to lock down a single computer, but they’ll never have access to the data center on which the company’s core data resides—those are incredibly secure, both physically and digitally.
Like a bank vault, but so much more
A cloud provider isn’t all that different from a bank vault filled with safety deposit boxes—by working together, and trusting a single entity with protecting the vault, they’re able to make it more secure that each individual could on their own. The brilliant difference with data, however, is that data hosted with a cloud provider is not only secure, but immediately accessible from anywhere in the world—if you’re like Company XYZ, that means being able to recover from potential threats more quickly, and return focus on the business activities that make a difference.
Is it time to protect your data the way a bank would? Does the threat of ransomware keep your business from pushing innovation the way you think it could? Are you ready for the cloud? Take our quiz to learn more.