Recent update and enhancements to our cloud application servers

6 December 2016

During the Thanksgiving holiday we implemented the following maintenance tasks on our cloud-based application servers which we hope you enjoy and never have to think about.  Please take a moment to review the update:

  1. Upgraded underlying software to the most recent versions to improve the overall system's performance, reliability and security.
    • Database Analysis Services that includes many new enhancements providing improved performance, easier solution authoring, automated database management, enhanced relationships with bi-directional cross filtering, parallel partition processing, and much more.
    • Improvements to the Database Engine.
    • Better Database Manageability, Connectivity, Usability and productivity
  2. Enabled "Data Encryption at rest" in addition to our existing "Data Encryption in Use" security.
    Data is at rest when it is stored on a hard drive. In this relatively secure state, information is primarily protected by conventional perimeter-based defenses such as firewalls and anti-virus programs. However, these barriers are not impenetrable. Organizations need additional layers of defense to protect sensitive data from intruders in the event that the network is compromised.Encrypting hard drives is one of the best ways to ensure the security of data at rest. Other steps can also help, such as storing individual data elements in separate locations to decrease the likelihood of attackers gaining enough information to commit fraud or other crimes.

    This means there is little chance that in the event of a successful breach of the security measures in place the attacker would have access to the data as it is still secured through encryption.

    Just to explain our existing security measures... Data Encryption in use is a way of protecting data being used which is more vulnerable than data at rest because, by definition, it must be accessible to those who need it. Of course, the more people and devices that have access to the data, the greater the risk that it will end up in the wrong hands at some point. The keys to securing data in use are to control access as tightly as possible and to incorporate some type of authentication to ensure that users aren’t hiding behind stolen identities.

  3. And performed other routine maintenance operations.

Click here to go back to the Winter 2016 update