Safeguarding Critical Data & Strong Backup

To protect sensitive/critical data available on users’ laptops we implemented a remote backup solution that can back up the important files and folders on the users’ laptop to a remote server. The main purpose was to safeguard the sensitive/critical information against the accidental loss/damage/ corruption and ensure its availability as and when required, by making an additional copy on a remote server kept at a secured location. Organization’s Need is cost effective solution, on demand or scheduled basis backup, data in motion should be encrypted during backup, backup using both internal and external network, simple and easy to use solution for backup of sensitive/critical information in laptops and data should be stored in encrypted format in secure mode, accessible only by the intended authorized user. We evaluated various backup solutions, both commercial and open source. Commercial backup tools being beyond our approved budget, we evaluated other solutions with no compromise on features and security parameters. We selected deployment of backup solution as hybrid consisting of various tools and technologies (open source as well as commercial).

(Read more:  Technology/Solution Guide for Single Sign-On)


Key Learning From the Project:

Functional

• Files with the latest time stamp should be stored on backup site
• Backup can be done in the incremental form after first full backup
• Data search feature should be available among the backed up data
• User can schedule the backup and run the manual backup on demand
• Backup for mail clients like outlook should be done in incremental form
• Basic compression of data should take place before executing the backup
• Backup should use both internal as well as external network (Intranet and Internet)
• Data restoration should be possible on a new machine in case of stolen/crashed laptop
• The backup software should support multiple OS like Windows, Linux, MacOS
• User can backup the custom files and folders to backup site with option to filter non-desirable files.
• Backup site destination may be company datacenter or cloud storage (like Amazon S3 or Google Drive )
• Data restoration may be possible on same machine from which the backup was initiated by choosing previous successful backup jobs

Security

• Type of encryption on wire (256 or higher bits, SSL/AES etc.)
• User shouldn’t have direct access to the data at backup location
• Only specific type of encrypted file format should be allowed in backup
• Type of encryption on destination data in rest (256 or higher bits, SSL/AES etc.)
• Audit trails should be maintained for the data restore activity from the Backup Server
• Data should not be visible/recoverable by the system administrator at the backup site
• Restoration activity at the machine other than ones originally used for backup should be possible only with IT support Intervention.

Licensing

• Licensing should be perpetual
• Licensing shouldn’t be per user or per machine

(Read more:  Action List Before Adopting a Cloud Technology)

After evaluating various open source and commercial tool following Tools and Technologies were selected for deployment which met our objective.


• Open source backup software for all laptops
• Commercial Secure FTP Server for windows as backup destination
• NAT and DNS for automatic internal and external switching between route selection (Intranet or Internet)

Limitations

• Open files are skipped during the execution of the Backup jobs
• User configured password for the Backup job is non-recoverable
• No central console available for backup job activities at users’ laptops.

- With Rohit Kachroo, CISO, Indiabulls Group on 'Safeguarding Critical Data & Strong Backup'

(Read more: CISO Guide for Denial-of-Service (DoS) Security)

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