Keeping an eye on your data

Cyberattack incidents have been on the rise across the globe as our world becomes more digitalized and we increasingly live our lives online. 

In Singapore, high profile data breaches have caught the nation’s attention. Most notably, an incident in 2017-2018 at SingHealth that compromised the personal records of 1.5 million patients, including that of Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong. That is a large amount of data considering that the country’s population is only 5.7 million people. You may also recall another incident just last year whereby personal data of more than 21,000 GrabHitch drivers and passengers were exposed. 

Undoubtedly, Singapore has become a target for hackers due to the island’s advanced technology adoption, it being a financial hub, and with these developments, the wealth of data available. Compounding this is the fact that cyberattacks are now industrialised, with organisations undertaking these attacks for profit. 

Against this backdrop, businesses here need to think big picture: What is needed to safeguard critical data in a threat landscape that is constantly evolving? 

Furthermore, as businesses embrace flexible, cost-effective technologies, and accelerate cloud migration with software-as-a-service (SaaS), now is the time to protect all your data – cloud, on-premises, and that ‘hybrid’ data that may be moving between locations today or tomorrow.

Here are some tips to protecting your data with a vision:

Manage complexity with a single pane of glass

Effective enterprise-wide data management has never been more complex than now. What with the expected data volume growth with trends like 5G, IoT adoption, and of course, more data being stored in remote locations as workers work from home or remotely.

Increases in data volumes, changes in business needs and ongoing operational complexity are also making it more difficult to apply Zero Trust controls effectively and universally. IT teams are under real pressure to improve data resilience, recovery and security. If done right, an intelligent, cloud-native data protection can meet all these needs and more.

SaaS backup and recovery in the cloud is the ideal solution to ease data protection challenges stemming from cloud migration. A simple-to-use, actionable dashboard will integrate and automate security controls, with minimal complexities or governance risks.

Be smart with your IT resources

When it comes to simplicity, your data protection solution should make the most of IT resources, not add to them.

In this case, it would be best for businesses to have a comprehensive data protection solution that supports your preference of infrastructure types, storage, and cloud platforms. This reduces both hardware and operating expenses.

For example, do you require a scale-out infrastructure to eliminate purchasing three to five years of compute and storage upfront? Scale-out allows you to buy what you need today. Also, scale-out puts an end to costly and complicated forklift upgrades whenever you refresh the hardware.

Another consideration is a solution that offers both source-side and target-based deduplication to eliminate backing up and retaining redundant data. Deduplication will lower storage costs while minimizing data management time. 

Regularly test backups, disaster recovery and incident response plans

There is a reason driving tests comprise both practical and theoretical components. You need to practice on real roads to gain road sense – the same is true with disaster planning and data protection.

Today, disaster recovery can refer to the ability to recover applications, databases, entire virtual machine environments or entire IT environments. It can be deployed in response to the failing of single applications, one manufacturing plant, or all your IT operations in one country. 

Unfortunately, in the rush to cloud, disaster recovery and incident response plans are often not updated. Regular checklists and testing, as mandated under the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), will ensure that current workloads across storage environments are all accounted for.

To that regard, immersive simulation exercises also provide realistic practice in the event of actual cyberattacks or data loss events. 

Looking beyond the cybersecurity battle

Cybersecurity is not a static, technical arena. It is a dynamic, contested space that is constantly evolving, as skilled, cunning malicious actors are always trying to find new ways to get past our defences.

The onus is on business leaders to lead this battle with vision – think of cyberattacks as a risk. In so doing, anticipate tomorrow’s business and technology needs and ensure that infrastructure is in place to provide a single, unified view across all data workloads. 

Regardless of whether data resides in the cloud, on-premise, or hybrid, a cloud-based disaster protection plan will support modern business operations with geographically dispersed teams.

A hawkeyed approach on your data protection plan in today’s environment will enable you to back up and recover your data anywhere, anytime.