There has been a lot, too much maybe, discussion about ransomware and its impact on business. Ransomware is a threat but it is only one of the reasons organizations should protect user endpoints and servers. In a recent Storage Switzerland webinar, attendees indicated that data loss caused by users were of greater concern than major disasters like hurricanes, floods or fires. There are two data loss vectors, other than cyber-attacks, with which organizations should be concerned.
Departing Data Takers
A top data loss vector is departing employees. Most organizations today use some type of a “bring your own device” (BYOD) model when equipping their employees. Even companies that provide technology to their employees realize that those employees will put personal data on them and intermix that data with corporate data. In both cases there is a good chance that some of the data on those laptops, tablets or smartphones will not also be stored somewhere else like a corporate file server or backup storage. The lack of central storage means the endpoint has unique copies of corporate data.
If at some point an employee leaves there is a very good chance, especially in the BYOD situation, that the corporate data on it may be lost forever. Even if the employee has to return the devices, they may reformat the drive or at least delete all “their” data prior to the return of the device; once again corporate data is lost.
Disgruntled Data Deleters
Another concern is disgruntled insiders, either employees who want to cause some damage on their way out the door or contractors who are unhappy that their contract has come to an end. Contractors are of special concern since they seem to easily convince themselves that the documents and data they created are actually theirs and not the organization’s.
Protecting Against the Departed and the Deleters
IT needs to protect the organization from both of these potential attacks. The first step is to make sure that every endpoint is fully protected, which is often easier said than done. The cloud though makes the deployment and monitoring of geographically dispersed devices much easier and the storage of its data more scalable.
Another important capability is remote wipe which enables IT to ensure that data is erased the next time the device is connected to the Internet. For BYOD situations the remote wipe feature needs to have the ability to only wipe certain folders or data types.
To learn more about protecting endpoints and how the cloud can make a difficult process easier and more scalable, check out Storage Switzerland’s webinar.