Datability: The top theme at CeBIT 2014

5 February 2014
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In a few weeks, the world’s largest IT fair will congregate on the grounds of the Deutsche Messe in Hannover. The theme of this year’s CeBIT is “Datability” which is a clever combination of the word data and the terms sustainability and responsibility. Ever since the Edward Snowden affair and its connection to the NSA and British intelligence agency GCHQ, the subject of data protection and data security has dominated the media with countless debates on this subject matter. Hence CeBIT ‘s response presenting its “Datability” theme focusing on solutions that aim to improve the usability and protection of proprietary data.

At the center of this debate lives the popular but controversial topic of “Cloud Computing: Storing business data cloud is here to stay.”  This theme is much in line with the project management software market where cloud computing is very much at the forefront. Although storing confidential company data in the Cloud has become commonplace, this issue must not be taken lightly. It is very important that companies are informed exactly about privacy and data security issues from their project management software vendor of choice. Organization’s must note that data security can vary immensely among different vendors and regions. For example, in Germany data processing is also regulated in § 11 of the Federal Data Protection Act and § 80 Tenth Book of the Social Code.

Here are some steps companies should consider to protect their data:

* The use of a firewall to ensure that the company’s own servers and the information on it are protected. A firewall is defined and designed to protect against unauthorized access to the system.

* The use of a monitoring system and login / logout system of application actions for review by authorized / unauthorized persons access to the system of project management software provider and / or changes of the stored information.

* The server itself should be housed in a high-security building in order to offer additional protection against unauthorized access and changes to stored information.

* There should be an automatic encryption of all stored documents with a single cipher key, as well as the anonymous storage in a secured database so that the documents can not be identified is also advisable.

* In Germany, the SaaS contract must meet the requirements of the new § 11 Federal Data Protection Act (BDSG). The order data processing pursuant to § 11 BDSG is in the EU or EEA relevant.

* The staff of the software vendor should have at a minimum a signed confidentiality agreement so that the disclosure of customer information is strictly prohibited.

* The data should be in a data center, which has a high level of security. Safety certifications, such as ISO 9001 and SSAE 16, should be included as well.

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