The recent data breach at a well-known ESP has gotten a lot of press and attention. Many large customers email lists were compromised including major retailers like Walgreens, Best Buy, Target as well as several financial institutions including US Bank, JPMorgan Chase, Citi, and more. Unfortunately this is not the first data breach that has happened to ESPs. The last two years have seen some well publicized events of data compromise. Many breeches have occurred by methods including spear-phishing (a series of targeted attacks and social engineering against a specific company in order to gain access to their data) and other more common security vulnerabilities.
Is your data safe at an ESP? It depends on the ESP. You should ask your ESP what security measures are in place. You want to ask about things such as firewalls, intrusion detection mechanisms, software vulnerability patching practices, antivirus and antimalware programs (both in their data centers but also in their offices), encryption of backups, and staff security training.
Net Atlantic employs multiple levels of security measures and securing customer data is always a top priority. Net Atlantic offers private servers with VPN lockdown for its customers where data security is the highest priority. A VPN or Virtual Private Network uses the highest levels of encryption available and allows additional protection against unauthorized access because without the VPN connection, the server cannot be accessed.
For our non-dedicated server customers, our system architecture features a multiple tier configuration, minimizing the risk of intrusion among servers thus improving the system wide security of data. State of the art firewalls, intrusion detection, and frequent security reviews add to system wide security. Perhaps the most important is regular security training of our staff to minimize threats like spear-phishing.
Net Atlantic also is compliant to the Massachusetts Written Information Security Policy, the most stringent state requirements for data security in the nation.
Customers can also contribute to security by using good password practices. Passwords used for business should be different than passwords used for pleasure. A secure password is one that is not guessable and does not contain dictionary words. It should contain at least 8 characters that is a mix of upper case and lower case letters and numbers. Symbols add another layer of security as well. Simple passwords like “baseball” or “123456” are not good passwords and are typically guessed first. G4f7km!d$ is an example of a secure password. Logging in at public terminals is a bad idea as keyloggers or malware can steal your password without your knowledge.
No ESP can guarantee 100% data security, but with Net Atlantic you can be confident that your data is cared for with the most up to date tools and consistent vigilance.