Having the right hardware is important. Software too. And you know how we feel about the importance of training your people. But the heart of any business is its data. For some businesses, it helps them get products to market faster. For other businesses, the data is the product.
Keeping that data safe and accessible by they people who have a legitimate right to it (and need for it) is why so much research is put into buying the right hardware, the right software, and the right training for your people. But that data doesn’t just need to be safe and accessible, it needs to remain relevant. That’s why it also needs to be part of what you look at while you’re doing your security spring clean.
So, what do you need to do to keep your data safe and fresh? Here are five ideas.
Review your file shares
The shared data directories on file servers are a cesspool of old and irrelevant data that’s wide open for ransomware infection. It doesn’t have to be. Review the file usage and remove the unnecessary clutter. Reorganize the folders system then review and update user and access permissions, that way once you get the data in order only the people who need to get to it can get to it.
Ensure file server patches are updated
We mentioned this when we talked about your network, but it’s important to make sure that all of your file servers have the latest patches and updates made to them. Not only that, vulnerability scans need to be run regularly and any deficiencies that are found need to be addressed.
Check and update your backups
Your backups not only need to be running smoothly but they need to include any new servers and their data. It’s also a good time to check and make sure that you exclude any servers that don’t exist anymore. This one is big: old data is a waste of space and a security risk.
Make time for general database maintenance
Databases need maintenance, too. For example, we really need to review our postgresql database procedures to ensure our internal databases are vacuumed properly and running smoothly. Improving this aspect of your database systems could have a significant impact on your internal systems’ performance.
We’ve asked it before, but we’ll ask it again. Is data management like this something you should outsource? It’s a lot of work, and chances are your staff is small. A budget-friendly way to get the kind of data management you need without adding responsibility to an already over-burdened staff is by turning to the cloud. Cloud-based data warehousing and Database as a Service offerings are growing both in popularity and quality.