Protecting Data Centres from Physical Threats
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Protecting Data Centres from Physical Threats

 9th May 2017

 

Data centres have rapidly become the powerhouses of 21st Century business, I gather there are currently over 1000 in the UK and the number is rising all the time. I think we are all aware of the online security dangers for such a valuable resource, but it’s important to remember that they are also vulnerable to physical attacks or interference too!

 

Traditional concerns for state-of-the-art infrastructure

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So great is the fear for the physical security of data centres, that we are seeing it becoming a major focus for installers and manufacturers of security solutions. Having said that, TDSi started working with data centre projects some five or six years ago, when operators started to fully appreciate the potential gaps in physical security.

 

Back then the typical approach to data centre security was what is often termed the ‘onion layer’ approach. Physical security started at the perimeter fence and then extended in layers to the outside of the building, the core of the building, each floor and finally to the ‘airlock’ security around the server rooms themselves.

 

Interestingly, up until as recently as two years ago, many facilities still relied upon the traceability of who went into the individual server cabinets by using manual systems – basically staff tracked who was given a server room/rack key!

 

A joined-up response

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With the advent of wireless locking technology, which has become prevalent over the last two or three years, the expectations have naturally increased. Data centre operators have the tools to closely guard these facilities properly. This demand has filtered through to security providers and it has become inevitable that wireless systems such as ASSA ABLOY’s Aperio and SimonVoss’ Euro Profile products have become ingrained in the wider integrated security network.

 

These locks not only protect server rooms but also the individual cabinets themselves. Naturally this is particularly important in a co-located data centre – namely a facility where a number of companies have their servers within a shared rack or room. Not only do you need to know which of your employees has accessed your most valuable of systems, you also need to know who else may have had access too.

 

Wireless locks are perfect for this. With full integration with the other access control systems in the building, the integrated CCTV and intruder alarm systems, it is far easier to stop malicious (or accidental) tampering or damage. It is also far more straightforward to investigate any situation and to learn from it for future improvements.

 

Working across the security industry 

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TDSi’s systems work directly with the wireless solutions from ASSA ABLOY and SimonVoss, but on a wider level, security distributors such as Anixter are looking to cater specifically for this important market. We work directly with Anixter to supply Europe, Africa and the Middle East with combined data centre solutions as a Technology Alliance Partner.

 

Being able to integrate all these solutions into the wider security network is crucial and something which TDSi specialises in. Our software and hardware solutions bring all the threads together to ensure any data centre is fully protected!

 

To find out more about data centre protection and the solutions on offer, why not give us a call on +44 (0)1202 723535.

 

John Davies, Managing Director of TDSi 

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