Data Encryption Software: Tape The Size Of "Two Dominoes" Goes Missing, Affects 13000.

One of the main principles of data security is that, if you don’t need a particular data set anymore, you’re supposed to get rid of it, especially if you’re dealing with sensitive information.  Think about it: if you don’t need it, you’re taking the risk of having it breached without expecting any benefits.

On the other hand, if you do need it–regardless of the reason why, including federal requirements where you’re just supposed to store it long enough–then it stands to reason you need to protect that information (and, when it comes to storing digital data, you’ll need a solution like AlertBoot’s data encryption.)  Hence, it stands to reason that one of the main storage media that require encryption would be backup tapes.

University Hospital – Augusta Data Storage

University Hospital in Augusta, GA found this the hard way when they had to notify nearly13,000 patients that there was a data breach with a low threat risk: a backup tape, about the size of two dominoes, went missing.  It was one of two tapes created in April 2008.

The tape was actually lost by an off-site data storage vendor, Augusta Data Storage, INC.  While I can’t say what type of security they had in place, based on the story and the commentary following it, it sounds like Augusta Data Storage runs a top-notch business.

Regardless, the honest truth about data breaches is that they’re never really expected.  Just like car accidents are a reality of life, but you can sail through life without ever being involved in one, we know that data breaches will occur, but whether it will happen to one of us, specifically–well, there’s just no way to know.

Which is why if you drive, you automatically need car insurance, and if you store large amounts of patient data, you automatically should require encryption software whenever any data goes into semi-permanent storage, regardless of what physical security might be present.

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