Digital transformation is reshaping how people live and work on a global scale. Moreover, these changes influence the way businesses view their operational procedures and day-to-day processes. Large-scale change in digital formation necessitates an evolution in the processes a company implements to take advantage of this evolution and transformation.
Additionally, the COVID-19 pandemic has expedited these changes significantly over the past few years. Companies learned to operate remotely, and employees at all levels learned to connect through web-based platforms. Not surprisingly, the demand for consumer and enterprise cloud services grew.
The culmination of these factors has made data centers crucial for many business operations, and providing proper security measures for data centers is one of the most important things a company can do. Protecting these data centers is of vital importance to ensure businesses remain functional as the digital landscape continues to evolve.
In this article, we will provide an overview of Omdia’s report entitled ‘Physical Security Vertical Market Assessment: US Data Centers.’
Sensitive information is housed and protected in data centers. The physical security needs are stringent and multifaceted to safeguard these data centers at all costs. Some common forms of data center security include perimeter security, controlling physical access to various sites, and monitoring important locations for unknown persons and suspicious activities. Process efficiency, as well as safety and security, must be supported by solutions.
Physical security managers at data centers must comply with regulations to ensure compliance and must meet a multifaceted set of standards.
Video surveillance systems are in operation at various points throughout the data center.
High-resolution security surveillance cameras with analytic functionalities can be installed at the site’s perimeter to provide advanced warning of any intrusion. Thermal cameras can be used around the perimeter to spot people under challenging lighting and environmental circumstances. Cloud-enabled security solutions are also being implemented; this allows for live viewing, recording, remote viewing, and remote monitoring of system health to safeguard data center sites.
One result of increased use in cloud-enabled systems is the need for new storage options and equipment, including hyper-converged infrastructure.
Physical access control systems for data centers are essential. Examples include defensive measures at the periphery, such as high fences and vehicle entry control. Two-factor authentication systems that combine cards and a biometric feature are popular ways to ensure that persons visiting the site are identified appropriately. You can also include an anti-passback feature; this feature allows an authorized person to access a restricted area, preventing another person’s card from being used. Additionally, you must change permissions swiftly in response to changes in the security environment.
Alarms for Intruders
Redundancy is emphasized in data center intrusion detection systems given that many of the sites in a data center are staffed 24 hours a day thus, traditional intrusion detection systems are not always necessary. However, certain intrusion detection systems have been installed, particularly in more remote areas that are mission-critical but not as frequently accessed, such as cooling and electricity plants. Traditional intrusion systems can be built around server racks to secure these assets.
What are the Market’s Driving Forces and Roadblocks?
The rise of digital content and accompanying data is the foundation for the data center market. There is now an overflow of unstructured data files where data was once structured and gathered in simple database systems.
Unstructured data sets and file formats from social media, gadgets, IoT sensors, and computing devices such as tablets, phones, and apps are currently increasing, causing an increase in data center demand all over the world. With massive data center buildings in major cities throughout the country, the United States market is no different.
Market’s Driving Forces
In the data center market, there are three key drivers. First is the common concern of asset and location security. The second market driver is securing the data center’s workflow and operational efficiency. Last is safety compliance.
- Traditional Security of Assets and Locations
Perimeter security software, intruder warning surveillance and video analytics, user access management software, and physical barriers to restrict access are all included in traditional security of assets and locations.The physical security of a data center is influenced heavily by its location. Surveillance-based perimeter solutions are ideal for certain data centers found in remote locations. Since the periphery is tougher to protect, other data centers are found in city cores and require a more layered approach.
- Workflow and Operational Efficiency
The second market driver is securing the data center’s workflow and operational efficiency. Overheating in server rooms, issues with energy management and the security of support equipment are all operational hazards. Using thermal cameras to track heat variations is how physical security can help mitigate this problem. The primary goal is to prevent any service interruptions. If a business can identify dangerous heat variations, it can minimize the damage and workflow decimation caused by servers overheating.
- Safety Compliance
The Environmental Protection Agency and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s rules are significant concerns for end-users, and they are a major driver. Another key factor to consider is cyber security. In general, end-users in data centers have a clear awareness of what they require in cyber security. As a result, security companies must guarantee that their products are up-to-date and that they understand how to incorporate cyber security into the systems they implement.Because of the risk of IoT devices and hacking, it is only necessary to keep unlicensed devices out of the data center’s key sections. Security solutions can scan and warn suspected breaches to protect against this threat.
End-users in data centers face many of the same issues and obstacles as those in other vertical industries. You must justify the cost and impact of implementing a new solution for security managers. Since there is no legal need for physical security, data center administrators must pick which security solutions are best for a particular site.
An additional difficulty is cost and budget. Competing needs, such as a replacement cooling system requirement, can take precedence over acquiring a security system. The physical security solution could be more difficult to explain, while the benefits of a cooling system might be easier to explain. As a result, the physical security solution could be more difficult to obtain.
The importance of ensuring that a company’s leadership team is aware of the dangers of not installing and maintaining a security system is crucial. Any breach or invasion harms the data center’s operational and process efficiency and the customer’s confidence in the services.
The Pandemic’s Impact
The data center market proportionately prospered from the coronavirus pandemic. The trend toward remote working and cloud-based solutions has quickened, and it is unlikely to slow down anytime soon. In supporting health and safety procedures, there has been a potential to promote analytics solutions to recognize face masks, occupancy rates, social distancing, and body temperature.
However, like many, data center markets also have their share of issues that came with COVID-19. The pandemic set limits on the number of individuals who may work in a data center and how they may interact with one another. New security solutions have become more difficult to implement as well.
General Market Trends
There are also several market-related trends to keep an eye on. Data-driven decision-making is becoming more and more popular thanks to AI-enabled analytics and intelligent monitoring.
Businesses are looking for new ways to boost production and efficiency to deal with workforce shortages while lowering risk. Automation and intellectual monitoring capabilities will enable the next phase of networked equipment. Almost all data center equipment, including electrical, mechanical, and IT, can be collected instantly.
Automation is becoming increasingly important to operate facilities quickly and successfully. Companies must build data centers more efficiently and sustainably in the long term. Prefabricated modular data centers are gaining a lot of attention to get there as they enhance deployment speed, promote standardization, and get tailored to the client’s needs. As demand for edge computing grows, vendors are researching edge data centers to meet the expanding capacity requirements while achieving efficiency, monitoring systems, modularity, adaptability, and sustainability goals.
How to Win Market Opportunities
There are three main pointers on how to win market opportunities: Education, process and safety compliance, and integrating disparate equipment and sensors.
Empowering data center security leaders requires a high level of education. Systems designers can collaborate with equipment vendors and other solution providers, such as Network Cabling Services, to effectively communicate the benefits and potential of physical security solutions. This time investment should pay off when more data centers are created to balance the continual demands.
- Process and Safety Compliance
A revenue potential exists in terms of process and safety compliance. The majority of data centers will already have a huge physical security system. Solutions that address the threats to data center processes and management performance for the physical security business could offer new project prospects. Network Cabling Services can help to provide solutions your data center clients need in order to ensure compliance.
- Integration of Disparate Equipment and Sensors
It is also crucial to bring various sensors and equipment together. Integrators, such as Network Cabling Services, can supply end-to-end solutions that give a better picture of what is going on on the job. Future technological advancements, such as the merging of sensors and artificial intelligence, will also lead to new solutions. End-users want assistance in comprehending what is feasible. They can then integrate these security solutions into their comprehensive security strategy.
Data centers are becoming increasingly important in today’s digital world because they are where the cloud lives. Photos, music, sensitive data, and other media are stored behind the digital vaults known as the cloud. With so many demands on the cloud, every person, company, city, and country needs to take the correct steps to secure their data centers. These data centers are vital to the global economy, and as such, they must receive priority.