Are you protecting data amid digital revolution?

Who would have thought about a decade ago that digital revolution could completely transform the way organizations conduct routine operations?

From large retailers analyzing and predicting customers’ purchasing decisions to supply chain firms adopting ‘smart’ technologies to ensure quality controls, disruptive technologies such as big data analytics and the IOTs have enabled firms to capture and effectively use the vital statistics in a real-time.

It has also positively touched our personal lives. Those colorful silicone bands and the ones made from synthetic fiber — omnipresent few years ago as weput on our hands to look ‘cool’ or raise funds for charity purposes—have been gradually replaced by fitness bands that serve as health monitors.

And yes a gigantic amount of information captured by big data and its potential use in modelling infrastructure plans like more efficient transportation systems promises to make cities more futuristic looking ahead.

For modern-day enterprises and government bodies, success hinge on how efficient they are in collating vital information.

Central to all the recent developments is a need to collect the actual data, evaluate it, and make best available decisions.

Data, undoubtedly, is the most valued asset for today’s organizations.It is the engine for growth and innovation.

And that’s why protecting critical data from a possible breach has become one of the biggest challenges as firms risk persistent threats from malicious insiders and external malefactors.

But are we doing enough to secure our digital assets? In this digital era, we are no more custodians of our digital assets. Those vital pieces of information are stored typically in cloud environments, which means that any rogue hacker or state-sponsored cyber attackers can exploit vulnerabilities, if our IT systems are found to be compromised.

A spate of highly successful cyber attacks in the recent past involving banks, an internet company, and government organizations have proved that point.

Likewise, while disruptive technologies like AI and IOTs promise increased productivity and efficiency, under preparedness to deal with rising cyber attacks possibly will lead to a disaster and undercut the advancements.

In this backdrop, it is imperative how we manage and monitor our digital assets. Organizations should maintain an effective identification andideally two-factor verification systems in place. Data centers should be shielded with Intrusion Detection Systems (IDS), Intrusion Prevention Systems (IPS), and a host of antimalware software that can prevent execution of advanced threats and will allow us to monitor network traffic. But more importantly, we need to guard against a growing threat of data misuse. Data breach, particularly from privileged accounts or successful DDOS attacks could bring an entire organization to a standstill.

About time organizations of all shapes and sizes realize that investors, in fact all stakeholders, nowadays don’t gauge organizations’ potential through skimming the free cash-flows, business models, and other financial ratios; the ability to withstand a growing numbers of cyber attacks by adopting preventive measures will differentiate winners from losers.


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