For IT Security – Call Your Local Sheriff 

by Data Holdings

IT security is necessary because of greed. Your data is gold that bad actors want to access, and they’re bound and determined to get it by fair means or foul. 

Local private cloud service providers like Data Holdings deal with protecting local business applications from greedy outsiders all the time. IT security is like the Wild West, and local private cloud providers are like the local Sheriff working with their customers’ IT teams to protect businesses against bandits. 

There are lots of big reasons to host applications in the cloud, but security is probably right at the top of the list. You might say: “I have a really good firewall” and trust that it will keep you safe. To a degree, that’s true, but it won’t protect your data on its own. You have to give it a fighting chance by making sure other areas of your IT security are ready to do battle. 

In reality, hackers always target a narrow field of vulnerabilities. Virtually every business operates using vulnerable applications, so any outdated software on a system, application, or machine anywhere in your organization exposes you to a security breach. It’s really that simple.   

Your data may be protected from being stolen, but a successful hack by the bandits will do damage inside your business by corrupting data, deleting it, destroying databases, installing ransomware; the number of possibilities are frightening. The key to successful defense is to deny access by keeping all software current. 

There are many reasons for the failure to update software. Your budget might be too tight to buy new hardware to run a newer version of software. You might be afraid that an update might “break” your application, your trusted IT person might have left your organization taking valuable knowledge with her, you might not have an IT person, the IT integrator you hired might not fully understand your business, and the list goes on. 

You might also have a printer, an HVAC system or an IoT device linked to your main network that is “open” with inadequate security. It will inevitably be found by the bandits, and it will be hacked. 

There’s also the alarming possibility your CFO might judge a custom application as too expensive to be rewritten to accommodate a new software version. So, you close your eyes and keep your fingers crossed, taking the chance that you’re either not being targeted, or any attack isn’t fully exploited, but that’s an entirely different subject and one even your local Sheriff can fix for you. 

Whatever the reason, you must understand that bandits 100% constantly probe business IT systems for old software and those “open” devices, so your software absolutely must be updated as soon as possible. Most of the bandit’s surveillance practices consist of automated bots that detect a software weakness, attack it, and enter your systems, effectively through the front door. If your software is not up to date, your firewall may not protect you. 

The “good news” is that your trusty firewall may protect you from the bandits making off with your data by denying command and control of your systems, but it won’t protect you from ransomware and vandalism, so the damage that will be done while they are inside can be considerable and very costly. 

The really good news is that much of this can be avoided with a strong relationship with your local Sheriff, a trustworthy private cloud services provider. All of those reasons for vulnerability that are caused by old hardware and other IT problems become moot. The service provider will host your applications on their hardware (which is able to run the very latest version of your software) and provide the expertise necessary to advise you and work cooperatively with your other IT partners on a strategy to avoid such future issues. 

One of the incidental benefits of becoming a local cloud customer is that by having applications “live” in the cloud, your local Sheriff can help you make sure future software patches are applied in a test environment first, to ensure they don’t break the application before they go into production. 

Our advice to you is to start a conversation with your local Sheriff so that together you can protect your gold from the greedy bandits. 

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