In addition to helping operations run more smoothly, as mentioned in previous posts, virtualization also often plays a role in businesses and governments digital security solutions. It cannot be a comprehensive answer to the threats companies face; no single program or strategy can be. When implemented along with other protections, though, virtualization is a cost-effective way of protecting information.
Solution for Data Backup
Thus far, this series has primarily focused on the benefits of using virtualization to store different information on the same physical server. Companies can also use this technique, however, to duplicate important information without purchasing another server. Because the two virtual servers are not recognized as being related to each other, even though they are physically on the same server, if one is sabotaged, the other will not be affected. If a virus renders a server useless for a time, companies can transition to the backup server. Similarly, if new software unexpectedly makes a server unstable, the information on that server can still be retrieved from the backup virtual server.
While virtualization can be part of a data backup solution, it cannot protect against physical damage. Data backup must be thought of in two aspects.
- First, information must be protected from an online sabotage. This is the type of disaster virtualization can help prevent.
- Second, information must also be kept safe from physical harm. For instance, virtualization does not help protect information during a fire. For this type of data backup, companies should use multiple physical servers.
Solution for Remote Users
Many employees work outside the office at times. From their homes or a local coffee shop, they use their personal computers, tablets and smartphones to complete tasks for work. At times, they will bring these devices, which have been exposed to unsecure settings, to the office with them. Letting employees access company servers through these personal devices that have potentially been compromised is risky. Businesses and government agencies that have highly confidential data on their servers cannot let employees access those servers through personal devices, unless the device is secure.
With virtualization, however, two digital environments can be created for the office. One server can be closely monitored for security threats, and the sensitive data can be stored on this server. Another one can be virtually set up for employees to use their personal computers and smartphones for data access.
Alone, virtualization is an inadequate security solution. In combination with other security measures, though, it is an economical way of creating a security solution that is both safe and functional. It provides a cheap data backup method, and it creates a place for employees to use personal devices at work safely.