Safeguarding RasPi and Shoring Up Cloud-Based DR, with a Software Defined Perimeter (SDP)February 11, 2020
By Don Boxley, CEO and Co-Founder, DH2i
In 2019, data security and protection continued to expand and play an ever-increasing role in IT and business operations decision-making. This is not a shocking revelation, as virtually every IT and business professional, as well as most laypersons, are well aware of the prevalence of data breeches, ransomware and other cybercrimes.
Likewise, the question of whether a business could withstand a disaster – manmade or natural – remained at the forefront, on the minds of IT and business alike. After all, having the right disaster recovery (DR) plan and technology to back it up, continues to be the difference between remaining operational versus your business taking a devastating if not fatal hit.
New Year, New Hackers, New Threats?
Here we are in 2020 – a fresh decade – with the hyper-focus on data security and DR showing no signs of waning. And, that’s a good thing. In fact, when it comes to these two critical technology areas, I have some predictions relating to Raspberry Pi (RasPi) and cloud-based DR. These forecasts are based on more than conjecture-they are clearly linked to a convergence of a number of industry trends.
Prediction 1: In 2020, anticipate seeing enterprises across varied industries start to employ in tandem two cutting-edge solutions:
- RasPi, a small computer that has become the go-to for building Internet of Things (IoT) platforms
- Software defined perimeter (SDP) software, which offers security to RasPi platforms (in addition to other environments), resulting in protection for IoT networks
Prediction 2: In addition, in 2020 anticipate seeing a disruption in the cloud DR market in the form of a new class of DR software that integrates SDP security. This new enhancement will deliver tremendous advantages over historical network perimeter security methods, like virtual private networks (VPNs) – which are typically complex to set up and manage, introduce probable performance problems, and are expensive due to the requirement of costly dedicated appliances and routers. The new class of cloud-based DR will enable organizations to construct DR environments with smart endpoints, whether DR is required on-premises or in a hybrid or multi-cloud environment.
Let’s dig down a bit more into what’s behind these predictions and explore their implications:
The pros and cons of RasPi platforms. Introduced in 2012, these super small, lightweight, dual-display computers have continued to increase in popularity around the world. No bigger than a credit card, these single-board computers-which were developed as an educational tool that anyone could learn-make it relatively easy for beginners to professionals to create IoT devices. In addition to their flexibility and adaptability in running Linux and putting users in charge of electronic components, RasPi platforms are also appealing from a budgetary perspective, as RasPi boasts a low entry price as well as highly affordable ongoing maintenance costs. It’s therefore completely understandable given these benefits why RasPi computers are booming globally, appearing not just in homes and schools with creators and educators, but also in countless industries as businesses of all sizes jump on the bandwagon.
These benefits of this ideal IoT platform are also what can lead to problems from a security standpoint. While IoT was invented to connect everything in the world, the threat to these connections is that data that hasn’t been adequately secured becomes vulnerable to hacks and attacks. As Alasdair Gilchrist pointed out in his book on IoT Security Issues, when it comes to IoT development, “product comes first and security second,” noting that “lax security processes” are often to blame for the security troubles plaguing organizations worldwide. In other words, inadequately securing a RasPi computer leaves it highly vulnerable to hackers.
Safeguarding RasPi with SDP. SDP software can help to prevent this and provide RasPi platforms with dependable and consistent data security (please see my first prediction). In tandem with RasPi, SDP can safeguard IoT networks cost-effectively, disguising the network presence of an IoT device and eliminating the wide attack surfaces inherent in VPNs, which were simply not ever intended to secure the perimeter-less, cloud-based world in which we now find ourselves. With application-level segmentation that creates a Zero Trust environment (not automatically trusting any user, whether inside or outside the network), SDP forms an encrypted network in which assets are invisible to unauthorized parties.
Shoring up DR strategy. Outside the data security challenges of RasPi, there are numerous other prospective challenges that today’s modern enterprise must deal with in this arena. Consequently, many organizations have turned to cloud-based DR (please see my second prediction) to augment or fully replace what they have been using for DR-especially if their present strategy is based on a traditional VPN platform for data protection.
2020, Its Finally Here
The year 2020 has long captured our imagination as an envisioned time of technological wonder. And now its finally here, and in truth, IoT, SDP, and RasPi hold all of that promise and more… that is… if we take the necessary steps to secure and protect the data that goes hand in hand with this new world of unprecedented connection.
About the Author
Don Boxley Jr is a DH2i co-founder and CEO. Prior to DH2i, Don held senior marketing roles at Hewlett-Packard where he was instrumental in sales and marketing strategies that resulted in significant revenue growth in the scale-out NAS business. Don has spent more than 20 years in management positions for leading technology companies, including Hewlett-Packard, CoCreate Software, Iomega, TapeWorks Data Storage Systems and Colorado Memory Systems. Don earned his MBA from the Johnson School of Management, Cornell University.