Don’t let the cyber-criminals win in a crisis, says PeaSoup cloud
Cloud and data specialist PeaSoup is urging UK businesses and organisations of all sizes to up the ante with their crisis management plans following recent high-profile cyber security incidents. Royal Mail’s overseas operation was severely disrupted, while the Twitter accounts of two Cabinet ministers were hacked and the Guardian newspaper was hit by a suspected ransomware attack.
Succumbing to a malicious attack to the extent that systems go offline can seriously tarnish an organisation’s image – not to mention longer-term consequences and recovery costs. Furthermore, any compromise of public data can result in weighty fines from the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO).
Data breaches are public enemy No 1
Public data records are particularly high risk. Data managers have to be hyper-vigilant to safeguard this information at all costs. The public puts a lot of trust in local authorities with the expectation that their data is going to be handled securely. PeaSoup’s cloud services help clients fight their corner to protect reputation and the ability to operate, demonstrated perfectly by a recent project.
Central Scotland Valuation Joint Board (CSVJB) carries out the valuation functions of Clackmannanshire, Falkirk and Stirling councils. It also has the responsibility for the Electoral Registration on behalf of the three constituent authorities. As part of disaster recovery planning, CSVJB turned to PeaSoup to implement a solid business continuity plan to protect against downtime, ensuring services can be delivered to the public at all times without interruption.
Working closely with the client, PeaSoup supplied a solution combining both Veeam Cloud Connect cloud backup and Zerto disaster recovery services. Both Veeam and Zerto are market-leading business continuity solutions that have provided a 360-degree backup and replication of CSVJB’s critical services with immediate failover.
Virtually secure in the cloud
Cloud backup precisely speaking Veeam Cloud Connect service provides a backup service through a secure single-port connection, providing easy access and visibility to hosted data in case of any recovery. Veeam also creates forever-incremental backups that save time and storage. Zerto Virtual Replication (ZVR) enables replication and orchestration from VMware vSphere and Hyper-V environments to the PeaSoup cloud. ZVR provides instant recovery, protecting against power and hardware failures, natural disasters, ransomware and other security breaches.
PeaSoup provided CSVJB with 5TB of storage with unlimited bandwidth and no egress and ingress restrictions and ‘add hot’ temporary increase of resources giving the client full flexibility and protection in case of any disruptions. The management layer of the backup and replication are easily accessible anytime and anywhere through a dedicated console, and the DR failover system can be tested at any point and anytime without disruption to prove systems are ready in the event of any natural or cyber-related outages. PeaSoup Tier 3 UK data centres provide data sovereignty and GDPR compliance.
PeaSoup public cloud with a VMware NSX layer provides isolated single-tenant environments for enhanced security. All the data is replicated into the CSVJB virtual private datacentre and remains separated from other users at all times.
Pip Hignett, CSVJB’s systems administrator, said: “Engaging with PeaSoup, we aimed to have a replication of all critical services that could be tested and proven in advance without disruption to the live environment and without budgets spiralling out of control.”
Blue light response is vital
Responding promptly to a crisis is critical. Take nothing for granted: a lack of planning for a data breach or IT failure can exacerbate any situation, as PeaSoup’s Head of Marketing, Art Malinowski, explained: “Business continuity can be turned upside down in a flash by an unforeseen incident, not to mention the risk of fines in the £millions from the ICO in the event of a data breach. So a high level of IT security against malicious activities is crucial for any size of business – and their customers.
“A future-proof disaster recovery plan is vital for ensuring systems will be available in the event of any data outage and/or cyber-attacks. CSVJB is a great example of an organisation that sees the value in future-proofing its data to not only enhance current security but also ensure uninterrupted access in the event of an attack. We’re delighted to be CSVJB’s partner: data is the most valuable asset an organisation can have and safeguarding it should be the highest priority.”