Thwarting data theft

Issue 3 2021 Access Control & Identity Management

In computer centres and other areas where many people have access, identification, organisation and control are non-negotiable. The E-Line brand from Dirak GmbH, available from Astra Fasteners, offers various solutions for these purposes.

Special care must be taken to secure customer data in computer centres in shared facilities with high levels of data and people traffic, for example, colocation centres. In this situation, it is advisable to organise access to the different racks by time and person, and to document each access event or attempt to obtain access. To prevent unauthorised access, colocation providers can provide their customers with access control on the server rack level with an integrated automatic documentation function. These solutions can also be used for computer centres that are only used by one company to organise access in groups of employees to ensure the security of internal data and systems.

For controlled access and organised security, developers offer different infrastructure with centralised and distributed solutions. A distinction is generally made here between online and standalone systems. In an online system, the closing system is integrated into E-Line by Dirak software and is managed. All handles are connected with the system in real-time so that all events within the closing system related to time are sent directly to a central office. This overview in real-time, supported by suitable software, provides online information about closing states as well as access events of authorised persons.

Although seamless documentation cannot provide 100% physical security against data theft, it is possible to track who obtained access to a given server rack at what time. This makes it possible to prevent internal misuse of data.

Individual access authorisations

The access authorisations can be issued individually, for example, so that maintenance teams are given only reduced access to specific racks. Either a card or PIN can be used for this. This is useful, for example, if a maintenance team arrives, since it is more convenient to enable a PIN for a certain time period than to issue a card which must later be returned. It is also possible to disable access by time if processes such as updates, backups or other electronic data processing operations need to run unhindered. Different alarms can also be configured in the administration software suite. If the rack is broken open, a sabotage alarm is also triggered and a message is sent to the central software at the same time.

Physical security solutions

The relevant online solutions differ in the nature of the connection and infrastructure. The MLR3000 system, for example, is a bus system for a central architecture in which only one IP address is needed for up to 32 handles. In the MLR5000 system, on the other hand, each handle has its own IP address. Which product is selected for the relevant computer centre always depends on the customer’s individual requirements. Astra Fasteners discusses this in advance with its customers and also provides support for them after the system is installed. Many solutions can also be easily connected to third-party systems, for example, via potential-free contacts, a Wiegand interface or an API interface.

Another consideration in choosing the right solution is that unlike online systems, standalone systems are not networked and are instead configured by master cards and user cards.


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