Public Internet Safety

By Karen J. Bannan  |  Posted 2002-01-29 Print this article Print

Public Internet Safety

9. How safe is using the public Internet to transfer mission-critical data?

The safety of an online transmission depends on the level of encryption that youre using and the type of data being transported. Experts say that most companies will want to avoid using the public Internet for mission-critical data. Currently, most companies are liable for data breaches, as with personal information. For example, any company that deals with health-related information is legally responsible for keeping that data confidential. Not doing so can result in heavy fines, sanctions, and lawsuits. In addition, once a file leaves your gateway, its subject to whatever bottlenecks it encounters on the Internet.

Currently, there is no way to implement quality of service on the Internet. When your application or storage solution depends on a steady stream of data, a holdup in the transfer of that data may crash your applications, and you may actually lose bits and bytes of data along the way. Thats not to say that a company should never use the Internet as a transfer mechanism. Small offices can use the Web to transfer non-mission-critical files in an emergency. And one use creates little if any liability for a company: using Voice over IP as a short-term replacement for telecom services.


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