Tom Dignan, Dell

Strengthening cyber resilience by securing, isolating and recovering data

Organisations must ensure they are mitigating against cyber risk and prepared for the unexpected, says Tom Digan
Tom Dignan, Dell

8 December 2021

In association with Dell Technologies

Around the world, a cyber-attack takes place every eleven seconds. Targeting everything from critical national infrastructure to business data, the economic and social impact of cyber attacks can be significant.  

With remote work arrangements to remain a feature of modern work, we are more vulnerable than ever to cyber attacks. McKinsey points to a near-sevenfold increase in spear-phishing attacks since the pandemic began, with criminals taking advantage of delayed updates to email and web filters to target remote workers. In addition, an IDC survey found that more than a third of organisations worldwide have experienced a ransomware attack or breach that blocked access to systems or data in the previous 12 months.




Cybersecurity in a data-driven era

With this in mind, expecting the unexpected when it comes to cyber attacks was one of the keynote sessions at the recent Dell Technologies Forum where cyber security experts offered insights on how business leaders can accelerate their cyber resiliency planning – the ability to prevent, respond to and recover from cybercrime.

This kind of planning is especially important given our current data-driven environment. Some 41% of businesses in Ireland say the pandemic has significantly increased the amount of data they need to capture and act on. However, according to our 2021 Global Data Protection Index, 67% of IT decision makers globally are not confident that all business-critical data can be recovered after a destructive cyberattack.

With data so intrinsic to modern business operations and services, the need to ensure and protect our data has never been greater.

Enhancing cyber resilience

The increase in data we’ve seen over the course of the pandemic is only set to grow in the coming months and years. Advances in 5G, the digital fabric of our data-driven era, alongside an exponential increase in apps at the Edge, will lead to an explosion in data for many businesses in Ireland. Rising volumes of data, the constant threat of ransomware and the use of emerging technologies like AI and cloud-native apps are all coming together to create multiple data protection challenges for businesses.

Organisations across Ireland need to mindful of the impact cyber-attacks can have on their ability to operate. The financial ramifications of cybercrime are enormous and will cost the world $10.5 trillion annually by 2025, exponentially more than the damage from all the natural disasters over the same period. However, the damage caused by cyber-attacks stretch far beyond financial costs, with the theft or destruction of personal data and intellectual property, as well as reputational harm.

So, with the data that drives businesses and fuels transformation efforts the same data that cyber criminals are after, how can organisations ensure they are mitigating against cyber risk and prepared for the unexpected?  

Protecting your most valuable asset

At Dell Technologies Ireland, we understand that business and IT leaders need to have confidence in the protection of their critical data. In the first place, every business must understand what its DNA is – that’s the critical 10-15% of data that must be protected at all costs.

Cyber recovery is focused on protecting and isolating critical data away from cyber threats and attack surfaces within a secure immutable data vault. It can also enable the recovery of that data vault when and if necessary. 

Cyber recovery distinguishes itself from traditional backup and Disaster Recovery (DR) in several ways. It provides additional layers of physical and logical security at both the solution, system and data/file level to ensure critical data can be preserved with integrity, confidentiality and to ensure it is available when needed for recovery. It also goes beyond DR plans by addressing the cyber threat to critical data but at the same time complementing DR plans which protect against other outages.

The Cyber Recovery Vault from Dell Technologies offers up multiple layers of protection to provide resilience against cyber-attacks, even from an insider threat.

In Ireland, we have seen greater focus on the role of the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) in the wake of the impact on our health services from an attack earlier this year. Government has committed to implementing the recommendations of a recent review of the NCSC including a five-year strategy to better define the NCSC’s authority on cyber security. The recommended measures will go towards ensuring that Ireland prioritises cyber security in its approach to recovery and that businesses can maintain trust in emerging technologies as they look to unlock their potential. This is especially important in the context of the cybersecurity initiatives from the EU coming down the tracks.  

We are undoubtedly at a crucial juncture in recovery planning, with the opportunity to lay robust digital foundations and empower a new wave of tech-driven infrastructure to thrive and survive for the years ahead. The pace and scale of cyberattacks even in the last twelve months is a warning that a digitally transformed economy and society can only be sustainable with cyber resiliency at its very foundation.

In the time it took to read this article, an estimated 30 cyber attacks have taken place – each with the potential to damage national infrastructures, erode citizens’ trust and undermine the prospect of digital transformation. By reducing the economic and societal impact of cyber-attacks while driving growth and innovation, cyber resiliency is imperative to a sound and future-proof economic recovery.

Dell Technologies Forum 2021

How to enhance your cyber resilience was one of the keynote sessions at the recent Dell Technologies Forum which is now available on demand.

With this content, we provide business and IT leaders with more detail about our cyber vault solution and how we can help company and business leaders to protect their critical data.

By accessing the insights and solutions from the Dell Technologies Forum on-demand content, which is available across the month of December, leaders across Ireland can lay the foundations for cyber resilience within their organisation, thus unlocking the true value of data with confidence and accelerating the pace of digital transformation in 2022 and beyond.

Tom Digan is cyber resilience director with Dell Technologies

Register for the Dell Technologies Forum on-demand content here.

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