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Each month, our data center experts will share insights, guidance and observations on market developments and challenges that affect businesses’ data deployment decisions, and impact data center service providers, corporate and enterprise data centers, hyperscale and edge data centers.

The articles found on our Data Center Market Insights page will cover various topics including total integration, the Internet of Things (IOT), energy efficiency, IT and facility management, distributed energy, mobility, disaster recovery, cybersecurity, data center federal regulations, and more.

Take, for example, the recent cyberware and ransomware attacks which impacted numerous organizations around the world. The most recent includes the June 27 “Petya” attack, which some perceived as ransomware but was actually a Petya variant “wiper disguised as ransomware.1

In May, organizations experienced the WannaCry cyberattacks in which users of infected PCs were presented with a screen demanding timely payment to recover their files and PC use. What initially began in the United Kingdom has, as of May 15, reached approximately 150 countries, infected more than 300,000 machines across telecommunications companies, hospitals and other organizations. As of May 12, less than $70,000 had been paid in ransoms, according to Sean Spicer, U.S. Press Secretary and Homeland Security Advisor to President Donald Trump.

In the issued statement2, Spicer advises organizations to ensure their software is up-to-date, citing that “the only computers that can be compromised by the WannaCry or WannaCrypt virus are ones that do not have the latest security patches available from Microsoft.”

While many have been quick to report on the ransomware attack since its onslaught May 12, broader questions remain. Will governments increasingly hold businesses more accountable for proper precautions? What does the WannaCry ransomware attack mean for data centers? For end-user organizations looking to employ hybrid approaches to manage their data?

There’s no denying that data breaches are a commonality in today’s digital world, with IoT continuing its reign as a common industry topic. According to the 2016 Global State of Information Security® Survey from PriceWater Cooperhouse (PwC), surveyed organizations detected 154% more incidents than the year before. (In 2015, the total number of detected security incidents was at 42.8 million, an increase of 48% since 2013 and the equivalent of 117,339 incoming attacks each day.3) To put this into an even broader context, the compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of detected security incidents has increased 66% YoY since 2009, PwC’s report findings show.

Mind you, these numbers only identify the growing rate of “detected” security breaches. A whopping 71% of compromises go undetected.4 Not to mention that it takes an average 191 days5 to even identify that a data breach has occurred. And once a breach does occur, an average of 58 days is needed to contain it, according to the Ponemon Institute’s 2016 “Cost of Data Breach” study. The financial impact comes in at a $4 million per data breach cost.

Getting past the numbers in itself can be exhausting. And the impacts on the data center market are multifold. Below we take a look at some considerations to keep top of mind.

Stay up to speed on data center regulatory compliance. Use of the Cloud years ago opened up a world of new security requirements and advanced protection against Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks, malware, phishing, ransomware and other cybersecurity risks. For example, SOC 2 and SOC 3 auditing standards for data centers ensure that a data center is secure, highly available and operating under a consistent set of high integrity processes. SSAE 16 (formerly SAS 70) identifies whether a data center provider has effective internal controls in place.  Data centers which exchange data at the government level must be compliant with the Federal Information Security Management Act (FISMA).

Ask the right questions. From multitenant or colocation data hosting, to the Cloud, to a privately-owned and maintained data center—whatever model you choose to store and protect your organization’s data, make sure the proper preventative security measures are enforced. What is the data protection strategy currently in place? Are security cameras and access control points implemented to prevent unauthorized data center access? Are proper network communications protocols, privacy controls and encryption recognition in place to protect critical IT assets and if so, to what extent?

Cybercrime represents fastest growing cause of data center outages. Word of mouth travels fast in the data center space. For a typical organization say in retail or in the financial services space, a data breach can mean many things such as loss of revenue due to faltering brand loyalty and lost customers. In the data center space, all it takes is one minute of downtime to equate to approximately $8,000 in loss—and cybercrime is continuing to creep up to the top of the list of data center outage causes.

No matter how secure products and systems are, hackers will try to break into them. Greater reliance on software and IoT equals greater entry points for cyberattacks. Instead of reactively responding to an attack after it has happened, there is a need to take control of more real-time response capability to detect threats before they occur. Taking a holistic approach to asset protection and regulatory requirements is one key consideration to protect mission-critical sites such as data centers and other industrial facilities. Learn more.

References:

1.      Forbes, “How Similar Are WannaCry And Petya Ransomware?” July 5, 2017:

2.      The White House, May 15, 2017: https://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2017/05/15/press-daily-briefing-press-secretary-sean-spicer-48

3.      Pricewaterhouse Coopers (PwC), “The Global State of Information Security Survey,” 2015

4.      Trustwave Holdings, “2014 Trustwave Global Security Report,” May 2014

5.      Ponemon Institute, “Cost of Data Breach Study,” 2016