Security is a major concern for growing businesses because the need to safeguard data such as customer records is becoming increasingly challenging. That’s because most networks have numerous vulnerability points, and hackers are targeting those vulnerabilities by launching more sophisticated attacks that make it harder for businesses to protect themselves.
What’s more, the mobile computing solutions used by many small and midsize businesses create a variety of additional data-security vulnerabilities. The popularity of smartphones will also contribute to potential security threats. Market research firm In-Stat forecasts that the size and growth rate of the smartphone market will exceed that of notebooks in the next five years. (More details here: http://www.instat.com/press.asp?Sku=IN0703823WH&ID=2148 .) Apple’s iPhone is undoubtedly contributing significantly to this growth.
John Girard, a vice president for the Gartner market research firm, warned attendees to the IT Security Summit in London that the popularity of smartphones is likely to increase the risk of attack. “The more your phone gets like a PC, the more it can host malicious code,” Girard said. “People are getting used to sending out executable code." (You can read more about it in this Techworld article http://www.techworld.com/news/index.cfm?rss&newsid=104984 )
A newer type of vulnerability is emerging from the use of Internet-based applications. A determined hacker can successfully attack an unprotected hosted application, for example. These attacks can result in data theft or, worse, plant malicious code on the Web site that infects the computers of visiting users.
To protect your business, it’s imperative that you implement security appliances on your network and security software on your devices. A newer tactic that is gaining in popularity is to use a hosted security solution. Hosted security solutions will help ensure that your technology infrastructure is not only protected at the device level, but also protected before any malicious code has a chance to access your network or devices. For example, by using a hosted e-mail security solution, an infected e-mail attachment is cleaned or quarantined before it infects your local e-mail server or an end-user’s computer.
The question is not which solution is best, a hosted solution or on premise-based software solution, but rather which solution is best for your business. One advantage of a hosted security solution is you can pay a monthly fee, as opposed to making a large upfront investment. Another advantage is that instead of a dedicated server or appliance on your premises, the hosted solution is fully managed and supported by the security vendor.
And that leaves security in the hands of experts, enabling you to mind your business.
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This content may have been developed with IBM funding. Regardless, this work represents the view of the author and does not necessarily represent the view of IBM. Although the content may utilize publicly available material from various sources, including IBM, it does not necessarily reflect the positions of such sources on the issues addressed in this content.