Kremlin goes back to the future to secure data – but managed services will be more practical for most, says Claranet

While the news that the Kremlin is going to spend £10,000 on a number of electronic typewriters in an attempt to eliminate the risk of damaging data leaks might raise a chuckle, it does show the level of concern over how best to safeguard sensitive data in an increasingly complex IT world, says Claranet Managing Director Michel Robert.

Increasing the creation of paper documentation is probably not a great idea,” Robert said. “Not only can it be difficult and time-consuming to identify valuable information in paper documents, but they can also represent a security risk themselves, especially from internal threats. And that’s before even considering the threats posed by fire, flood, or other natural disaster that might destroy those documents.”

As the vast majority of data is created by business systems, the primary focus remains on securing IT systems, Robert said: “If you are concerned about safeguarding your data, your first step should be to evaluate how much of your data is actually sensitive, how long it needs to be retained for, and how often it will be accessed. In taking this approach there is the opportunity to reduce complexity and the volumes of data stored securely.

“Having completed this audit, IT decision-makers can focus on building the right mix of internal and external services to meet their requirements. It is important to carefully consider network security and resilience, including private MPLS networks, encryption, and integrated 3G services to address mobile working,” he continued.

“Not all managed service providers are born equal, however. Organisations need to identify a provider with the capacity to supply integrated hosting, communication, and network services, providing a solution that is bespoke to their needs. Transparency over how and where data is stored is also crucial, with in-country data centres providing assurances as to sovereignty,” Robert concluded.

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