How Can You Ensure Your Backups are Secure?
by Bridget.Giacinto, on Apr 15, 2016 9:12:46 AM
Disaster can strike at a moment's notice, which is why many organizations have started to fully utilize backup solutions to keep their information safe. However, just because you're consistently backing up your files doesn't necessarily mean that they are protected from the wide variety of dangers out there. Everything from thieves and cybercriminals to floods and fires can put your backups at risk, making it important to put some safeguards and backup security best practices in place to ensure business continuity.
Let's take a look at a few backup security measures to ensure secure backups.
Encryption is possibly the most useful backup security tool available for ensuring that data is secure at rest and in transit. These tools codify information and distribute a set number of keys to authorized users to decode the files. Nick Espinosa, CIO at BSSI2, told Tech4BusinessNow answered the question, what is the most secure way to backup files by stating that businesses should package their data backups and encrypt them with 256-bit AES at minimum.
However, while encryption allows for a secure backup, you'll need to ensure that all keys associated with this secured backup method, are kept in a protected place. After all, if you lose the key, you'll no longer have access to the data. Encryption is the best line of defense against hackers, but it won't amount to much if you don't have the keys, store your keys locally without any password protection or tell everyone your passwords.
Follow the 3-2-1 rule
While there are numerous tools to help protect information on devices, a fire, flood or other natural disaster could easily destroy your hardware and physical files. For this reason, it's important to follow the 3-2-1 backup rule. This backup security best practices guideline states that organizations should keep three backup copies, across two different mediums, with one stored off-site. Many businesses may use a combination of the cloud and disks to facilitate these needs allowing for the most secure way to backup data.
With this many options for restoration, companies can rest easy knowing that their most critical information is accessible in any situation. TechTarget contributor Kevin Beaver suggested handling your backup media as critical hardware and storing a copy in a fireproof safe to keep your options open. It'll also be important to gauge vendor security measures for off-site storage, to ensure it complies with industry regulations and is compatible with encryption techniques.
"Testing backups would help identify any vulnerabilities before you're impacted."
Encryption and multiple backup copies are significantly beneficial to securing your files, thus providing backup security measures, but you need to verify that you're backing up the right assets and that your backups will work as expected in an emergency scenario. Testing your backups on a regular basis is vital and could mean the difference between easy restoration and potential closure. Beaver from TechTarget, noted that testing would help identify any vulnerabilities before you're impacted and enable you to adjust your backup strategy to better fit data security requirements.
Secure backups are an essential part of business continuity, making it important to ensure that they are protected with encryption. By using encryption, leveraging multiple backup copies and testing on a consistent basis, you can keep your files safe and have peace of mind that you'll be able to recover in the face of a disaster.