Unless you win a lottery, choosing a data center will mean a big chunk of the evaluation is cost. It also means planning checklists and site visits to ensure you get what you pay for.
But even with the best prep, things are still missed when evaluating a data center. One essential item needs to be building security – especially if the facility is an older one. Bigger and newer are not always better. If you are including the smaller and older centers, make sure there is a checklist to cover the items below.
One of the best ways to gauge the general quality is also the easiest – use your eyes. What do you see when you arrive? Start with the building. Is it well maintained or in need of repairs? Are the grounds kept up? Does it have lots of windows or a few strategically placed for natural light?
Consider every aspect of how you gain access to the mantrap. Is it badge access? PIN access? Cameras and video surveillance? Does someone validate that the PIN matches the person using it before granting access?
What about perimeter intrusion detection – video surveillance, alarms and more? If so, is it necessary to operations? If it’s a manned center, do they have security guards? What’s the process for gaining entry? Sign in? Photo ID check? Super-secret password? Let’s just say, it shouldn’t be easy to canter in without question.
Great, now that we’re in the mantrap, how do you gain entry into the data center itself? This is the second point of access and needs consideration as well. Is it that same magnetic stripe card? PIN code? Biometrics? A combination of these or others? More video or security checks? How do they know you are you? Ask.
The average cost of a data breach is in the millions, with costs beyond response and remediation. Be serious about evaluating this first level of security. It can slow down a potential breach or stop one altogether.
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