Barracuda Networks, Inc., a provider of cloud-enabled security and data protection solutions, cautions corporations from relying on outdated technology such as tape backups to store sensitive customer data.
The caution comes in lieu of a recent announcement by a financial institution, that several of its magnetic tapes containing back-up data had been lost in transit during routine operations. The bank further stated that there was no evidence that the information had been compromised and was taking the necessary measures to protect its customers.
Last month, Malaysia’s CIMB Group Holdings Bhd said some magnetic tapes containing backup customer data were lost during routine operations, adding that there has been no evidence so far that any data has been compromised.
The tapes do not contain any authentication data such as pin numbers, passwords or credit card security numbers, the country’s second biggest lender said in a statement.
James Forbes-May, the Vice President of APAC Sales for Barracuda says, “We still see some organisations opting to use tapes for backup as they seem slightly cheaper. However, in the long run, the cost multiplies when we factor in the need for physical storage, rotation, transportation and the weakest link – human interaction. Worst of all, in the event of a loss, the company may lose its credibility and the trust of its customers.
“There is just too much room for human error in a tape-based backup strategy which requires human interaction at every step of the process.”
Magnetic tapes need to be changed out, transported offsite to a storage facility, rotated often. If the data needs to be recovered, the tapes need to be retrieved, loaded, and then the tedious restore process begins; and there’s no guarantee that the restore will even work.
“Organisations can significantly reduce the risk of data loss and avoid compromising customer privacy by implementing more current data protection methods such as – disk-based on premise backup that automatically replicates data to an offsite location – be it a remote office, public cloud infrastructures or private cloud solutions,” he adds.
“It is crucial that organisations with sensitive customer data use solutions that can enable backup and offsite data replication to be automated and encrypted in order to minimise human interaction and percentage of error while helping to ensure rapid recovery in the event of a ransomware attack,” asserts Forbes-May.
“Companies must make sure all steps are taken to ensure their customer’s privacy is never compromised. It is essential that consumers are able to rely on the credibility of an organisation especially in the financial sector,” he ends.