The Importance of Encryption
23rd August 2018

Names such as WannaCry, Petya and NotPetya have become all too familiar as those within the enterprise and public sector suffered business disruption at the hands of cybercriminals and ransomware.

When WannaCry struck, disruption was wide and swift. According to NHS England, more than 81 NHS trusts were affected, with some even turning of devices and shutting down computers as a precaution. With a further 603 primary care organisations also reporting disruption, there were said to have been nearly 20,000 cancelled appointments, with 600 GP surgeries returning to pen and paper and five hospitals simply diverting ambulances as they were unable to handle any more emergency cases.

Although that ransomware attack was stopped within a matter of days, reports suggested more than 300,000 computers across 150 countries had been affected. WannaCry was also significant in being the first ‘ransomworm’ the world had seen – a self-replicating piece of malware that bounces from computer to computer in much the same way that diseases in the real world do, feeding and growing off the best-connected computers.

Indeed, WannaCry was a necessary wake-up call in many respects. Particularly when experts revealed the number of ‘unpatched’ IT systems stood somewhere in the region of 40m.

Although this represents just one aspect of policing the perimeter it really does put into perspective just how much firms must think about when it comes to securing the business today and that’s before considering how you manage and police mobile devices and IT assets. After all, it’s not just those on the outside you need to consider.

This is forcing businesses to strategically look at and reconsider their approach to IT security with a fresh pair of eyes. Factor in regulations such as the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and most have their hands more than full. It can all appear very daunting even to the most seasoned of professionals and is certainly one reason many firms are now looking to trusted partners for help and in some cases secure outsourced solutions.

Imagine being able to forget about certain elements of this by using secure encryption and modular services that protect your devices before they even boot up? What about encrypting both these and hard disks right down to individual folders and segments of data? Wouldn’t it also be wonderful if you could do this via a centralised management system that ensures seamless integration with existing IT infrastructure and meets the FIPS 140-2 security standard for full disk encryption; a certified mark of quality expected by security experts the world over? Imagine being able to produce a report at the click of a button, demonstrating your organisation’s compliance with the GDPR.

It’s easier than you think and with the correct encryption solutions deployed across the business, you can deliver measurable improvements to your bottom line whilst at the same time being able to reassure customers that they are taking the correct precautions when it comes to customer data and compliance.

About the author

Neill offers a host of ideas and solutions for companies ranging from start-ups through to multi-national corporations. He uses his experience in developing innovative, cost effective and reliable IT strategies for organisations.

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