Softsource vBridge protects NZ groups’ data with Cloudian service

Softsource vBridge, a New Zealand-based ICT systems integrator and service provider, is working with Cloudian to help organisations in the country to protect data from ransomware attacks by creating an immutable backup of their critical data.

The partnership sees Softsource vBridge leverage Cloudian’s HyperStore object storage and Object Lock data immutability technology and operate it from its Auckland and Christchurch data centres. 

The data protection service, named Indelible Backup, has ramped up as New Zealand organisations seek to keep a failsafe of their critical operational data separate and available to reinject quickly in the event of a ransomware attack or accidental deletion.

The Indelible Backup service is already used by Auckland University of Technology, several district councils and other New Zealand-based organisations using AI to power large, geospatial datasets. 

Softsource vBridge has deployed and is fast filling two petabytes of data – equivalent to about 22,000 4K movies – on Cloudian’s platform, and will expand the environment for new and existing customers as part of the new agreement.

“Our Cloudian-based service, Indelible Backup, offers the difference between being back online within hours or days instead of weeks or months when the worst happens,” said John Ward, customer experience manager at Softsource vBridge. 

“When organisations are locked out of their data, they can’t operate, trade, pay staff or process invoices,” said Ward. “The costs can spiral into millions of dollars, notwithstanding the long-term customer relationship and reputational damage that can occur.”

The system helps to maintain data sovereignty by keeping the data hosted in and only accessible from within New Zealand, helping organisations to meet security and compliance needs and preferences around sensitive data. 

Also, it has zero ingress or egress costs, charges typically associated with pulling data in and out of the cloud. This can save tens of thousands of dollars per month or more depending on the amount of data in play. 

The partnership expansion comes as organisations find it increasingly difficult to obtain cyber insurance. Cloudian and Softsource vBridge customers often find that data immutability is key to securing the cyber insurance coverage they need. 

Further, some Cloudian customers report receiving a discount of up to 15% on cyber insurance because of “robust data protection.”

“Cyber insurance is often the ambulance at the bottom of the cliff – if you need to activate it, you’ve already lost in a sense,” said Ward. “But it’s something New Zealand organisations require. By partnering with Cloudian, we can help organisations get insurance, and we help them avoid needing to use it.”

James Wright Cloudian senior director in Asia-Pacific and Japan, said the issue of data immutability needs to be forefront at the board level and should be central to organisations’ governance.

“There’s a wider risk here when organisations believe there is a level of separation between the data they use and its backup copy,” said Wright. “In reality, backup copies are vulnerable, something they only realise when they’re attacked and both datasets are compromised.”

Wright said they’ve designed this system to provide the level of assurance that New Zealand organisations need. The backups are untouchable, and are even protected from rogue actors within the organisation. The backup copies can be the lifeline organisations need when their perimeter defences are taken down, and really that is a ‘when, not if’ consideration.