Rethinking Compliance: Beyond Security to Business

Volume # 03
Availability for the Modern Data Center: Business & IT Perspectives
Rethinking Compliance:
Beyond Security to Business Continuity
Enjoy reading,
Your VeeamUP editorial team
Compliance in the new
threat landscape
Page 3
Compliance in the new
threat landscape
In a business world increasingly driven by mobile and social technologies, IT
departments face significant challenges to keep corporate data safe. Against this
background of rapidly evolving technology, they also have to ensure compliance with a
whole range of regulations (from Sarbanes-Oxley to HIPAA or PCIDSS) designed to keep
data protected and retrievable.
But compliance can’t simply be seen a box-ticking exercise; it’s a vital element of any
large IT organization’s activities. The potential financial damage of data loss is huge,
from hefty fines to serious impact on revenue. But the damage to the reputation of your
brand and your senior management team can be even bigger – and even harder to
repair. Against this background, the availability of the systems and data that keep your
business running is absolutely critical – downtime and data loss are unacceptable.
Demonstrating to regulatory bodies that you can limit the risk of suffering from
traditional criminal attacks such as SQL injections and Distributed Denial of Service
(DDoS) attacks is just the start. Advanced threats are growing in volume, sophistication
and persistence every day. Staying ahead of these threats – whether from bored kids,
foreign state-backed hacking teams, or highly motivated and well-organized criminal
gangs – is a monumental challenge. Alongside these external threats, the ever-present
danger of employee negligence or malfeasance adds further compliance risk.
In this constantly evolving threat landscape, even the best-protected organizations
will eventually suffer a failure. The question is: How do you accelerate and streamline
effective responses to criminal activity and ensure the availability of business-critical
systems when the inevitable happens?
Moving beyond security
Traditionally, compliance activities have focused on how to:
Protect: with perimeter defenses, anti-virus and anti-malware software
Detect: by monitoring access and data movement to identify attacks as they happen
Respond: by containing the damage, combating the threat and conducting forensic
Sustain: through risk assessments, policy reviews and periodic vulnerability checks
But a strategic approach to compliance needs to look beyond this protect-preventrespond model. In a world where data breaches are inevitable, security will only get you
so far. Compliance activities also need to encompass a rigorous approach to business
continuity, so that when the worst does happen, you know the systems that keep your
business operational will carry on running.
In this edition of VeeamUP we’ll look at why it’s essential to rethink how you approach
compliance, and we’ll offer some practical advice on how you can take compliance
beyond security in your own organization.
VeeamUP. Availability for the Modern Data Center: Business & IT Perspectives. Volume 03
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Turning compliance into
competitive advantage
Page 5
Turning compliance
into competitive advantage
For many global enterprises, complying with legislative mandates is simply the first step.
Taking the next step by adopting ISO standards helps demonstrate a proactive approach
to risk mitigation through adherence to strict business continuity criteria. Accreditation
for rigorous ISO standards can offer a real competitive differentiator, providing the
increased credibility to help organizations enter new markets and increase their share of
existing markets by attracting new and larger customers.
Compliance with key ISO standards for data protection includes the implementation
of proactive business continuity management systems that can ensure key business
processes are resumed quickly in the event of a failure or disaster. By adopting these
standards, enterprises can prove to customers that robust systems are in place to keep
the business running, no matter what happens.
Audit-proof compliance
But to achieve accreditation and sustain it, organizations must be able to demonstrate
adherence with the expected standards in ISO audits. For ISO standards looking at
Business Continuity Management Systems, the ability to demonstrate the availability of
business-critical systems in the event of a failure is vital. Performing backups and putting
disaster recovery (DR) plans in place is essential, but if they’re not regularly tested, it can
be difficult to prove they’ll be recoverable if the worst does happen.
Compliance with the Sarbanes-Oxley Act is also essential, designed to protect investors
in the wake of high-profile accounting scandals is mandatory for publicly-listed
companies in the US. In recent years, however, it has become the de facto global
standard, representing a robust approach to ensuring electronic records and audit trails
are retained and auditable for long periods of time and recoverable after a disaster.
To make your systems audit-proof, whether for ISO or Sarbanes-Oxley accreditation,
continually testing DR systems and recoverability is essential. It’s also vital to document
the tested recovery times for key business systems and processes.
Your backup and recovery systems should provide a full audit trail and detailed test
logs that can be kept for as long as needed. They should also give you the ability to test
backup copies, recoverability and restore times in a sandbox environment, so you can
run tests at any time with no impact on your production environment.
VeeamUP. Availability for the Modern Data Center: Business & IT Perspectives. Volume 03
Veeam Software
Page 7
Rethinking compliance
Enterprises tend to simply partner with data protection vendors on their compliance
programs. But compliance needs to be integrated with business continuity plans,
which means organizations must look beyond traditional security vendors to find
additional technology partners that can help ensure the data center and the business
services it support are always on.
Of course, the always-on data center is itself a key risk factor for compliance. As
networks become stretched through mobility and BYOD initiatives and pressure from
the business increases to deliver services 24/7, keeping data, applications and users
protected becomes even more challenging.
Against a background of rapidly changing advanced threats, it’s not a question
of whether a breach will occur, but rather when a breach will occur. And as new
technologies and threats continue to emerge, your defense posture and approach to
compliance must be able to adapt quickly to keep up with the pace of change.
Know, don’t hope
In a constantly shifting threat landscape, the classic defense model of prevention and
protection is inadequate. What’s needed is a clear plan that’s continually tested and
updated to ensure you’re always following the latest best practices and your business
continuity management is completely audit-proof.
Achieving compliance and gaining the ISO and Sarbanes-Oxley accreditations that
differentiate your business doesn’t simply require robust backup technology and
processes. It requires the ability to continually test the recoverability of your backups,
so you’re able to demonstrate with confidence that you can meet recovery time
objectives for critical applications.
With ongoing backup and recoverability testing you don’t need to hope your businesscritical services will keep running when a failure occurs – you’ll know they will.
Make accountability part of the plan
It’s all too easy for compliance accountability to fall across multiple business functions,
but a single point of overall accountability is essential for success. Once you’ve decided
to achieve ISO or Sarbanes-Oxley accreditation, it’s essential to designate a compliance
officer and compliance team to support your businesses continuity objectives.
Reporting to the CISO, the compliance team must have an unambiguous mandate to
constantly review compliance and ensure a rigorous adherence to the accreditation
Reporting to the CISO, the compliance team must have an unambiguous mandate to
constantly review compliance and ensure a rigorous adherence to the accreditation
VeeamUP. Availability for the Modern Data Center: Business & IT Perspectives. Volume 03
Veeam Software
Solving the
compliance puzzle
Page 9
Solving the compliance puzzle
Security is only one piece of the compliance puzzle. To ensure full, readily auditable
compliance, organizations need additional support beyond that provided by vendors
of protection and prevention solutions. It’s vital to find a technology partner that can
support your organization when security solutions fail to protect business-critical
applications and data – and ensure ongoing availability for those services. Your business
continuity technology partner shouldn’t just provide backup and DR capabilities – it
should deliver thorough and continual testing of the recoverability of backups.
Veeam delivers business availability through advanced backup and replication and DR
technologies, offering high-speed recovery and verified protection to help organizations
take compliance beyond security – and enable the Always-On Business™. By helping
enable accreditations and meet audit requirements, as well as proactively identifying
ways to improve backup and DR processes, Veeam’s technology expertise can help you
increase brand credibility, align compliance activities with core business objectives, and
keep key business services up and running when disaster strikes.
Visit to learn more.
VeeamUP. Availability for the Modern Data Center: Business & IT Perspectives. Volume 03
Veeam Software
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