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Data Security … for the SME

May 4, 2010

Status Not Quo (SNQ) is slightly unique in the realm of IT Consulting Firms in that we focus on the Small to Medium sized Enterprises (SMEs) – which I feel is an underserved market.  I have always felt that these are the companies that are technology and business savvy; appreciate how the strategic use of technology can give them an unbelievable competitive advantage over their competition; but, cannot afford million dollar implementations and $400 per hour consultants – but can still benefit from similar technology found at the high end.

Putting that aside for the moment, I just finished reading a book named “Fatal System Error” by Joseph Menn.  The inside cover includes this in the description of the book:

“Fatal System Error penetrates both the Russian cyber-mob and the American mafia as the two fight over the Internet’s massive spoils … their stories explain why cybercrime is much worse than you thought – and why the Internet might not survive”.

Fairly ominous right?  It delves into the wide spread battles that have been fought via the Internet, and how it has evolved from initially a tool for extortion, later a global billion dollar black market economy, and finally a government/state weapon of covert offense.

Back to my intro paragraph: my immediate interest in all these types of reads is “what does this mean to our clients and the market that we serve”?  There are certainly lessons to be learned here.  While interesting and potentially applicable, protecting a SME against Denial of Service attacks, Trojan horses, etc is probably not the main take-away.  However, one thing continually rears its ugly head in so many things I encounter – identity theft.  One of the statistics stated that something like 36% (sorry – not sure if that was the exact number) of Americans have fallen victim to identify theft in their lives.  That is shocking.  And now, businesses are even finding themselves victims as well (from a legal, banking, or web presence perspective – i.e. Phishing).

The question I’m faced with is how this affects Status Not Quo – we are experts in development, and very specifically e-commerce – which is all about Data Security.  At SNQ, these are topics we will be discussing much more in length in the coming days, as we continually strive to re-invent our company as ever-valuable to our customers.  I’m not looking to be the next network security firm, but Data security, as it relates to both technology and business strategy is certainly where we bring the greatest impact. 

Blending both Technology and Procedural safe-guards and best practices in critical.  We recently finished a Data Security review for a long-term client.  Interesting results – the important Procedural/Business recommendations were on par in volume and impact with the Technology based recommendations.  As is the case with many business topics, it is an incomplete approach to solely focus on either the business side versus the technology side to the detriment of the other.

More to come on this …


2 Comments leave one →
  1. July 29, 2010 3:11 pm

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