Shaken but Secure: Bond’s Guide to Data Security

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The election’s over, but not the week’s major events. Skyfall, the latest James Bond movie, comes out this Friday. We’re excited because this time around, 007 must race to stop a different kind of bomb: a stolen hard drive. The stakes are high: sensitive data stolen by malicious forces, top security bypassed by a master hacker, and data held hostage while lives hang in the balance.

So while Bond might be ducking bullets to a rocking soundtrack, he’s also facing the same dangers that lots of companies fall prey to. That includes international tech giants like LinkedIn and small local local firms just trying to get by.

Want to keep that sort of thing from happening to your business? Here are three spoiler free tips gleaned from the master spy.

1. Need to Know

The world of James Bond is full of secrecy. From code names to coded messages, “need to know” is the motto of the spy game. Skyfall‘s stolen hard drive is dangerous because it threatens to lift the veil on that hidden world.

We’re not suggesting you relocate underground or equip your employees with bullet proof evening wear (even though that might be really cool!) Instead, it’s your server that needs to get the spy treatment. Setting up an Active Directory is a great way to open your data while making sure only those who need access get it. Each employee gets an ID and password (we’ll let you decide who, if anyone, gets to be 007). With a single, simple sign on, that person can then retrieve and store all the information needed to get the job done.

Make sure your secret agents … er, employees are well versed in counter espionage techniques, like recognizing enemy phishing tactics and creating strong passwords. Provide them with good intel on how to combat online attacks. Make it part of everyone’s mission to keep sensitive business data under wraps.

2. Secure the Base

While the agents of MI6 are mobile and international, they all get their missions from a central base of operations back in London. Headquarters is in a secret location, locked up tight and only accessible to those with the right clearance. Even Bond’s had trouble getting in from time to time.

Now, think about where your server lives. It’s probably not the break room, but is it in a space just as vulnerable? Physical security can be just as important as digital firewalls. Your server should be under lock and key in an area only available to those needing to work on it.

Don’t just think about your server, though: laptops, hard drives, and memory sticks are all one theft away from a security breach. Develop a policy for how to handle mobile computers and storage devices that contain or access business data (that includes smart phones).

3. License to Kill

Bond’s a suave guy and knows how to cuddle up to all the right players on an assignment, but when things go south he’s all business. Just how does he manage to defeat the bad guys and save the day? One word: planning. He goes into situations with the right training and preparation to handle whatever happens, and follow through no matter the cost.

Your business needs a plan on how to handle the worst possible scenario. A large part of that plan should center around offsite backup and recovery. When and if a breach occurs, whether due to criminal intent, insider negligence, or natural disaster, you want to make sure you can quickly get back up and running. That kind of breach is likely to have caused concerns for your customers, so getting things back to normal is critical to ensuring a smooth recovery.

Finally, think about the need to dispose of your technology when the time arises in a secure, environmentally responsible way. A data wipe of a hard drive is good: physical destruction is even better. Plus, we enjoy getting the license to kill junk machines.

Your Mission …

Remember, data security isn’t just something for movie spies and Fortune 500 CEOs to worry about: it’s a concern for all businesses. We’re glad to provide professional assistance on getting your data up to Bond security standards. Start work today to make sure no matter how shaken or stirred, your business data remains secure.