Preventing Data Breaches: Essential Tips for Robust Data Security

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Safe from harm

With the amount of data growing at unprecedented rates, so are the external threats to it from cyberattacks, which is why data security is imperative as part of any security strategy, says Ben Jackson, CEO of Titan Data Solutions.

Data is growing at an exponential rate, and it is estimated that 291 zettabytes of data will be generated by 2027. In our digital society, data has become a highly valuable commodity, and for businesses, it is crucial to their operations. From proprietary information to financial details, companies are now responsible for an extensive amount of data. 

With cyberattacks still very prevalent, any robust security strategy must include data security as data breaches can be catastrophic to a business whether it be from financial losses, reputational damage or regulatory fines. Data security helps protect brand and revenue.

Why is data security important?

It’s difficult to stress the importance of data security for businesses today. Having a robust data protection strategy helps companies to protect personal, financial and confidential information and prevent it from falling into the wrong hands. This includes everything from credit card numbers and user credentials to proprietary information and intellectual property. A data breach can significantly damage a company’s reputation and erode customer trust. Maintaining robust data security measures is vital for sustaining a loyal customer base. 

Various regulations and laws require organisations to implement data security measures to protect sensitive information. Compliance with regulations such as GDPR, HIPAA and CCPA is not only a legal obligation but also critical for avoiding hefty fines and legal repercussions. Data breaches can result in substantial financial losses due to fines, legal fees and the costs associated with mitigating the breach. Additionally, the downtime and loss of business that often accompany a breach can have a significant economic impact.

Data breaches in the news

Data security has been in the news a lot of late, with big brands such as Ticketmaster and Santander confirming that they have fallen victim to data breaches. While it is yet to be confirmed by the companies themselves, the alleged perpetrators suggest that these breaches concern hundreds of millions of data records. If true, these breaches would be some of the largest in history. 

These companies are household names, hence the fact these breaches are newsworthy, but the reality is that a record number of businesses experienced a data breach last year, up 78% on the year before. Attackers do not discriminate, so regardless of size, companies must prioritise data security to ensure they’re protected against external threats.

Data minded

As a specialist distributor, data is Titan’s forte. We are a trusted advisor in this field and data security is obviously a key focus for us. When looking at the challenges our partners’ customers are facing, we consult on all aspects of their data environment, where its stored, how they’re managing data movement and, importantly, how their data is currently being protected and secured. 

We offer a host of services that can help companies with their data security strategy. Services such as penetration testing and vulnerability assessments give the end user an outside in perspective on their security posture. This provides companies with visibility of threats across their infrastructure and identifying where their data is vulnerable to attack, so they can take proactive measures to secure it. 

For those looking for a more continuous service, our managed security services provide round the clock monitoring. This service employs security experts who identify and respond to cyberattacks to significantly reduce the risk of data breaches, protect sensitive information, and maintain business continuity.

Our technology portfolio is designed to help organisations harness the true potential of their data. We specialise in providing solutions that address the growing need for data storage, management and security. The process of data security is front and centre within our solutions, allowing our partners to offer always-on data protection that minimises the risk for their customers.

Immutable data

Immutability ensures data integrity, providing a reliable history of stored information that is crucial for legal compliance, auditing and security purposes. Immutability protects against data corruption, accidental deletions and malicious attacks, such as ransomware, as it preserves a pristine copy of the data. 

Additionally, it simplifies backup and recovery processes, ensuring that critical data remains intact and accessible. By leveraging immutable storage solutions, end users can enhance their data protection strategies and maintain robust, tamper-proof records.

Air gapping 

Air gapping is a security measure that physically isolates storage devices from any network to enhance data protection. This isolation prevents cyberthreats, such as ransomware and malware, from accessing and compromising critical data. By creating an air-gapped backup, businesses can ensure that their data remains untouched by online threats, providing a secure fallback option in case of an attack. 

This method also protects against accidental deletions and insider threats, maintaining the integrity and availability of vital information. Air gapping offers the highest level of data security and resilience.

Data encryption

As previously mentioned, strict compliance and regulations exist around data protection. Data storage technologies can offer encryption, which allows the user to secure sensitive information by converting it into unreadable code, accessible only with the correct decryption key. This protects data from unauthorised access, ensuring that even if data is intercepted or stolen, it remains confidential. 

Encryption is crucial for compliance with regulations like GDPR and HIPAA, which mandate the protection of personal and sensitive information. By encrypting data at rest and in transit businesses can prevent data breaches and cyberattacks, safeguard their intellectual property and maintain trust with customers and stakeholders. Ultimately, encryption enhances data security, privacy and regulatory compliance.

For when disaster strikes – backup

We would always advise businesses to have a backup and disaster recovery plan in place in case the worst should happen. With the cost of downtime estimated to be about £5,000 per minute, the speed at which a company can get back on its feet in the event of a breach is critical. Backup and disaster recovery solutions help businesses ensure that their critical data remains accessible and intact in the event of unexpected disruptions. 

These solutions also play a pivotal role in maintaining business continuity and minimising data loss from cyberattacks, hardware failures, natural disasters or human errors. By incorporating backup solutions into the security stack, companies can ensure the availability, integrity and confidentiality of their data, mitigating risks and increasing resilience in the face of unforeseen events. 

Tape storage

Tape storage is going through a bit of a renaissance. It’s often considered an ‘old fashioned’ type of storage, and some even say it’s dead. But the truth is, the amount of data being stored on tape is growing, with 152.9 exabytes worth of tape shipping in the last year. At Titan, we’ve always been a champion of tape storage, and partners and end users are really embracing the benefits it provides. When it comes to secure data storage, it really is an indispensable option. Some of the key functions already mentioned include air gapping and encryption come as standard in tape solutions, making it a brilliant choice for securing data.

For those ‘data-savvy’ businesses that are storing all their historical data, tape storage is a great option for cold storage. As artificial intelligence (AI) and large language model initiatives accelerate within businesses, the more data a company must input, the better the data it churns out will be. The cost-per-gigabyte of tape storage remains low, and its high capacity meets the needs of large-scale data storage. 

Conclusion

Data is only continuing to grow and at speed. Technology advances like AI are only exacerbating this growth. Data now plays a pivotal role within any business, and its protection is a necessity for all. Suffering a data breach may not only result in hefty monetary fines but could irreparably damage a business’ reputation and lead to its demise, something we’ve seen in the past. 

With attacks like ransomware affecting about 85% of businesses last year, Titan can help customers store, manage and protect their data from attack.