Physical security includes measures and precautions designed to guarantee the physical protection of IT assets such as facilities, equipment and other properties from damage and unauthorized physical access. Physical security aims to protect such assets from physical threats like theft, manmade catastrophes, accidental damage, fire and other natural disasters. It is an essential part of a security plan and is an indispensable component of all security efforts. Although it is often overlooked, physical security is as important as cyber security.
All in all, the entirety of your intricate systems and firewalls are of no use when an attacker removes your storage media from the store room. Physical security has two phases: deterrence and detection. Deterrence refers to, as the name suggests, the precautions and measures taken to deter attackers, accidents and natural events. Often signs and physical barriers are used for this purpose. Detection includes any equipment, practice and software that helps the security staff to detect potential intruders. Watch dogs, motion sensors, thermal cameras and other surveillance equipment are used for this purpose. Now you are well informed on nature and necessity of physical security but what additional measures should you implement in order to ensure it? Let’s take a closer look.
The server room is the heart of your physical network. That is why someone with malicious intentions can do massive damage in there. What you need to prevent such attacks is, as simple as it sounds, putting a trusted lock on the door. Of course you also need policies requiring that the door must be locked when the room is unoccupied. Moreover, you must keep a tab on who has the key to get in.
Don’t forget the fact that servers are not the only thing that requires your attention. You need to secure your network devices as well. Make sure that you lock them in a room or for additional security, keep them locked in a different location in the building.
Workstations and servers must be protected too. It is pretty easy for a thief to open their case, remove and literally pocket the hard drive. Departing unnoticed with a hard disk in your pocket is not that difficult. That is why many computers have case locks and come with a key to open them. Get locking kits for cases of workstations and servers and lock them. Needless to say, keep the keys in a safe place.
If you are worried about your employees copying sensitive information to removable media, you might consider disabling or removing means of connecting external drives such as USB ports. Filling the ports with a substance like glue can prevent their use, or you might opt for software mechanisms that disallow their use. Also you can get disk locks and insert them into floppy drives on computers in order to prevent the use of floppy drives.
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