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Friday, 29 July 2022 11:28

Why your data protection strategy needs to prioritise recovery

By Peter Corbett, senior storage architect at Dell Technologies

GUEST OPINION: It's anyone's guess when the next cyber-attack will target your business, but with highly sophisticated malignant actors coming from all corners, the odds are it will be soon.

The Australian Cyber Security Centre received 67,500 cybercrime reports in the 2020-2021 financial year – that's one report every eight minutes. Remote work arrangements created new challenges, with connected devices growing out of control and opening vulnerabilities, and many of them have not been addressed despite us being several years into this arrangement.

As we continue to navigate the uncertainty that life seems to continuously throw at us, what is certain is that you need to tighten cyber security measures and proactively take steps to protect your business against cyber threats and minimise risk.

Advanced data protection is one tool in the cyber security arsenal that can allow rapid recovery from ransomware attacks. In combination with a strong security discipline, including two-factor authentication, network intrusion monitoring, and good hygiene around keeping systems updated with the latest patches, your organisation can significantly improve its resilience against attacks. These data protection trends will be the cornerstone.

The need for air-gapped cyber vaults

When it comes to cyber security, a study by Accenture found that 81% of chief information security officers (CISOs) agree that "staying ahead of attackers is a constant battle and the cost is unsustainable." With the increasing sophistication of attacks, prioritising recovery is vital.

Businesses will continue to deploy strongly secured cyber vaults as physically or logically air-gapped systems, protected from larger networks and therefore less vulnerable to attack. These systems provide a high-confidence backup target, enabling rapid restoration of critical business processes, data, and applications should a ransomware attack occur. They combine this with active defences of their networks and data stores, rapid intrusion detection, and proactive response planning to ensure business continuity and privacy of confidential data.

As more companies take multi-cloud approaches to store data, you can also expect them to move critical data away from the attack surface by physically and logically isolating it from access within public clouds through a secure, automated, operational air gap. Companies should look at their vulnerabilities in case their network is compromised, including connected public cloud infrastructure. They should take steps to minimise risk and "air-gap" data.

Air-gapped protection against ransomware through cyber vaults allows businesses to reduce risk, maintain business continuity and preserve data integrity and confidentiality with layers of security and controls.

The remote workforce requires new security measures

Over the last few years, we've transitioned to a remote or hybrid workforce. Companies commonly have thousands of employees working remotely, all with network access. As organisations continue to adapt to growing security concerns in hybrid work environments, Dell Technologies latest study finds that 74% of companies agree that remote work has caused their exposure to data loss from cyber threats to increase. As 2023 approaches, companies will seek ways to extend data security to remote workers and mitigate risk.


Businesses will continue to migrate workloads to as-a-service models, including everything from application hosting runtimes to underlying compute and storage infrastructure. The security requirements for such infrastructure are just as significant as traditionally installed, managed and consumed infrastructure, but with the added complexity that the infrastructure is often located in a shared co-lo location.

A corresponding development is the ability to consume backup infrastructure, including cyber vaults, in a similar fashion.

Data protection beyond 2022

The way we do business is shifting faster than ever and is driving decision-makers to reconsider how they will manage their data in the second half of 2022 and beyond. As we move toward a more distributed IT and business world, companies should prepare to meet these new challenges by prioritising resilience and ensuring recovery.

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