Disaster Recovery Planning with Microsoft Azure and MyWorkDrive

Data Leak Prevention and Disaster Recovery Planning

Combine MyWorkDrive with Azure File Share for a File Share Disaster Recovery Solution

Disaster Recovery Planning isn’t just about data leak prevention. Along with ransomware, malware, viruses, phishing, and other cyberattacks, a serious Digital Protection Officer must plan for natural disasters as well. There’s a lot about Digital Transformation and the Internet of Things but essentially it all boils down to being constantly connected and every device that’s added and every computer networked is another entry point of disaster. Recently while attending the Gartner CIO Symposium in Orlando, Florida I had a long conversation with the CIO for a small island country that experiences strong hurricanes. The country had been hit hard by several recent hurricanes and their emergency plan included physically moving hard drive back-ups of their data center from low lying areas where government offices were located. Many San Francisco based companies have colocations dispersed throughout the country or state because of earthquakes. Solar farms exist to just power servers since the lack of electricity could render Blockchain completely useless.

What happens to Enterprises who lose their data or has their data breached? They can lose customer trust, clients, investors, and find themselves scrambling to gain back market share or worse yet never recover due to the damage or perceived damage done. Unfortunately, major cyber-attacks have become all too common as bad actors have become more efficient, pervasive, and emboldened. We have all heard the headlines from various sectors including credit cards, credit ratings, political institutions, personal information like medical history, personal emails being publicly leaked, and other nefarious acts. Data leaks and breaches can mean big money for hackers who sell credit card information to the highest bidder especially around major holiday shopping seasons.

What about data centers and cloud platform providers that house other sectors that when data is breached it can mean a national security disaster or a major economic meltdown.

Major sectors including government, healthcare, financial, and educational institutions must depend on stringent security procedures and major disaster planning and contingencies. It’s not just companies like Apple or Amazon who worry about losing data integrity. 2014 gave us the Sony Pictures, JP Morgan Chase, eBay, Home Depot, and Anthem debacles. The Sony Pictures hack got a lot of infamous notoriety because of the North Korea connection. 2016 gave us the Russian attack on the American electoral process. The American power grid is vulnerable. Airlines and airports have been hacked. Now in 2018 it’s common to hear about issues almost on a monthly basis and so much so that there were 40,000 attendees at the RSA Conference in San Francisco this year.

Enterprises and institutions can’t be too big to fail. Disaster recovery is all about planning for the worst and then having a back up plan to that plan. Failovers must be ready to go and be deployed instantly. If a network has been compromised then much like a cancerous tumor, the virus must be excised and extracted quickly before spreading. Shutting the network down may cure the symptom but the malignancy may exist on a cloud platform that you have absolutely no control or ownership over and what then?

Having a hybrid cloud type or private cloud set up where a backup of your most critical files can exist on a non-networked server and either be deployed or retracted and contained as a silo as needed to shore up vulnerabilities is key. In turn you can stay agile as you revert back to the on-premise uncompromised file servers with secure file share remote access provided by MyWorkDrive’s patented technology.  Think of a castle with high stone walls and a moat and retractable bridge. When under attack, the bridge goes up, the moat water level rises and the innermost sanctum behind the fortified walls carries on business as usual.

Before you have a major outage and disruption and chaos ensues, you need to have done some homework first. Important preparation includes being very aware of what risks your enterprise will face including how much downtime is manageable, a full inventory of critical digital assets, and identifying all aspects and steps of the back-up process. You will need a redundancy structure and rollback/failover process and identify what applications must stay up and running or be brought back up first and triage as necessary. What is your escalation process and what key stakeholders must be looped in and when do they get notified? The team must establish rules of engagement and then go through drills and concurrently have the best data center provider possible. You should have a full audit and include a full diagram of your network and identify weak points and create redundancies and contingencies accordingly.

What if we told you that you could restore end user access to files within minutes of an outage, a system failure, or a power outage? No more need to hit the panic button! Also- what if you didn’t need an expensive DR site to make it work?  This isn’t an IT pipe dream. It’s cloud disaster recovery with Azure File Share Sync services!  Let us show you how:

In the event of a critical emergency users can instantly connect to a MyWorkDrive server in Azure connected to Azure File Shares to access files and edit documents online from any web browser or mobile device.  Once the emergency has passed any changes made are automatically synced back to on-premise storage.

How it works

Azure File Share Sync enables enterprises with on-premise file shares to sync them to Azure File Shares stored in Microsoft Data Centers or to remote locations.  Microsoft has recently announced general availability of Azure File Share Sync and it’s now fully supported.   MyWorkDrive has partnered with Microsoft since its initial preview last year – https://www.myworkdrive.com/azure-file-share-sync/.

To get started customers simply sync their file shares to Azure using Microsoft Azure File Share Sync Agents – https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/storage/files/storage-sync-files-planning, setup two virtual servers in Azure – a backup domain controller for emergency user authentication and a MyWorkDrive Server for users to access files pointed to Azure File Shares synced from on-premise.

Azure File Sync can be implemented with minimal overhead by installing an agent on company file servers.  In addition to supporting offsite syncing, Azure File Shares can be connected to Azure Backup. Azure Backup offers Azure backup as a service. It is cloud native and uses file share snapshot technology to capture the point-in-time state of the cloud file share. Since the snapshots are incremental, the storage consumption for backups are minimal.

In an emergency user are instantly able to connect to their company file shares via any Web Browser, Desktop PC or Mobile device!  When the emergency is over any changes made are synced back to on-premise storage.

Users can be up and running in minutes and continue productivity, agility, and efficiency with added layers of security after what would have normally brought a company to its knees and a grinding halt.

Utilizing Azure with MyWorkDrive now can be a standard operating procedure in Disaster Recovery Planning for major companies and enterprise size institutions.

 

 

MyWorkDrive Launches Version 5 at Gartner Symposium

MyWorkDrive, a leader in private cloud secure remote file access, will debut new enhanced security file remote access features at Gartner Symposium/ITxpo, in Emerging Technologies, October 14-18, 2018 in Orlando, Florida.

MyWorkDrive is a software-only solution for secure remote access to in-house file servers from anywhere for any device. Users gain access in minutes without Sync, VPN, RDP or migrating data. IT leaders looking for a cloud-like file sharing solution can rely on MyWorkDrive’s ransomware protection, data leak protection (DLP), data governance compliance (FIPS, HIPAA, FINRA, GDPR) and enhanced Office 365 real-time online collaboration, with a lower total cost of ownership in comparison to other solutions.

“Our growth is an excellent indicator of the need for secure private cloud file access without VPN or complex cloud migrations” said Dan Gordon, CEO, MyWorkDrive. “Our customers are embracing our new security features rolled out in Version 5. We strive to meet the rigorous security requirements for the enterprise to enable them to meet the demands of the Digital Workplace.”

MyWorkDrive connects to Windows Active Directory and enables instant online collaboration and editing with Office 365 using Duo’s Unified Access Security (UAS) authentication. The release of Version 5 includes robust security updates including:

  • Encrypted views of locked down documents
  • Over 60 available file types to view in the browser without downloading
  • Watermarking of all files to prevent printing and screen photos
  • File access without the ability to download, print or copy to a clipboard
  • File extensions can be blocked or approved increasing ransomware protection
  • Direct online access to Office 365 documents
  • Prevention of password saving

Stop by booth ET12, in the Emerging Technology section or attend an informative session on October 17, 2018.

Session: Think Outside the Cloud
Speaker: Dan Gordon, CEO of MyWorkDrive
When: Wednesday, October 17, 2018, 6:00 pm
Where: Stage 4, Pacific Terrace

About Gartner Symposium/ITxpo
Gartner Symposium/ITxpo is the world’s most important gathering of CIOs and senior IT executives. This event delivers independent and objective content with the authority and weight of the world’s leading IT research and advisory experts and provides access to the latest solutions from key technology providers. CIOs and IT executives rely on Gartner Symposium/ITxpo to gain insight into how their organizations can use IT to address business challenges and improve operational efficiency. For more information, please visit https://www.gartner.com/us/symposium.

About MyWorkDrive
MyWorkDrive provides a software-only, on-premise data center solution for secure remote file access from anywhere for any device. Users gain access in minutes without Sync, VPN, RDP or migrating data. MyWorkDrive is for IT leaders looking for a cloud-like file sharing solution that has ransomware protection & DLP, facilitates data governance compliance (FIPS, HIPAA, FINRA, GDPR), enhances Office 365 real-time online collaboration, with a lower total cost of ownership. MyWorkDrive’s rapidly-growing customer base includes Oxford University, Loyola University, Habitat for Humanity, the United Way and the Boston Celtics. MyWorkDrive is privately held, based in San Francisco, California and a product and dba of Wanpath LLC. Visit us at https://www.myworkdrive.com.

MyWorkDrive Version 5 Released to Production

We are pleased to announce version 5 of MyWorkDrive is now available for full production download.  We have dubbed this our “Security Update” and released it as version 5 as it’s the most robust security release in the history of the company.  MyWorkDrive CEO Dan Gordon says, “We are proud of Version 5 and happy to offer major security updates including a new critical feature that allows encrypted views of locked down documents and sixty other file types in MyWorkDrive’s web browser client. Version 5 also prevents a user from downloading, printing or copying with watermarking text overlays and extensive logging. Our clients asked for critical security enhancements and we are happy to deliver them.”

Watch the Webinar

 

 

New Version 5 features

Web Browser Client

  • View 60+ file types in the browser without downloading
  • Data Leak Prevention Features: Access files while preventing downloads, clipboard copy or printing
  • Watermarking of all files to prevent printing and screen photos

Mapped Drive

Server

Mobile

  • Mobile Browser Client Improvements
  • Open documents for viewing without needing Office in Mobile Apps

Numerous enhancements and fixes – Release notes are here.

 

To Download Login to our portal here.

*Upgrade note: Existing customers can upgrade for free in place.

Questions? Need a trial extension? Email us at sales@myworkdrive.com or Phone: 877-705-4997

Why MyWorkDrive?

Version 5 continues our strident efforts on providing data leak prevention best practices and governance compliance with many security enhancements especially tailored to the Government, Healthcare, Financial, and Educational sectors.  MyWorkDrive connects to your Windows Active Directory and enables instant secure online collaboration and editing with O365 using active directory and optional Duo.com two factor authentication.  You own your data, no third-party cloud migration needed with a secure web client, desktop mapped drive, or iOS and android app enabled editing.  MyWorkDrive is easy to install and manage for multiple stakeholders in various remote locations.  Major regulatory compliance standards including HIPAA, GDPR, FINRA, and FIPS are easily attained while using MyWorkDrive to securely access and share files for Enterprise agility, efficiency, and lower cost of ownership.

The mobile workplace is a reality that every CTO knows that involves multiple stakeholders across various time zones and locations who need to collaborate often in real time. As we have heard in the headlines, one simple click on a wrong link in a phishing type email could compromise an entire network’s security, an enterprise’s brand reputation, eradicate customer loyalty, or render an institution’s governance compliance null and void. Conventional remote access via VPNs do not guarantee privacy and are expensive to maintain. MyWorkDrive’s Version 5 solves critical data protection problems.