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Many industries, specifically the ones that on one hand must collaborate and share information and on the other hand have to deal with highly sensitive information and state-run industrial espionage – such as e.g. Life Sciences, Pharma, or BioTech – must enable information protection while enabling business agility. They need to define their Information Protection Lifecycle and foster it by adequate technology. Document-level access control and distributed storage combined with strong encryption is an important building block in enabling such concepts.

Commissioned by Rohde & Schwarz Cybersecurity

1 Introduction

In the age of Digital Transformation, businesses need to change the way they operate. Business today is driven by a need for agility in adapting to new demands and responding to new market entrants. This change also requires the ability for rapid innovation, for staying ahead of the competition. Amongst the changes caused by this are modern organizations, agile development approaches, the application of new technologies for delivering new and innovative digital services, but also changes in the way business collaborate and share information with partners. Collaboration & sharing are the new normal.

This applies, amongst others, to industries such as

  • Life Sciences
  • Pharmaceuticals
  • BioTech

The business models in these industries require an over-average level of collaboration and rapid innovation.

The challenge for these organizations arises from three aspects:

  • Information is highly sensitive, but of interest for many other parties
  • Cyberattacks are on the rise, including state-run attacks for industrial espionage
  • The way IT operates is changing – such as “cloud first” or “work from home”

Businesses thus must understand

  • What to protect
  • Where to protect (at the device, the network, the system, or directly at the information)
  • How to protect

Businesses must shift to more holistic concepts, such as the IPLC (Information Protection Lifecycle) defined by KuppingerCole. This concept looks at the whole lifecycle of information from creation to disposal, with the information protection approaches that apply at each stage and that finally form an approach for comprehensive information protection.

Such IPLC approach must support all collaboration, information sharing, and information storage models, supporting the business requirements. This specifically also includes supporting common collaboration and information sharing platforms. If e.g. Microsoft SharePoint or Microsoft Teams are the platforms of choice for collaboration within or beyond the enterprise, then it is about enabling adequate information protection by adequate technologies, not about restricting the business.

Rohde & Schwarz Cybersecurity provides a strong set of solutions for supporting a well-thought-out, advanced IPLC even for critical industries, based on their R&S®Trusted Gate set of solutions, but also their other cybersecurity offerings. These solutions enable distributed and fragmented, encrypted storage of information and control about information access.

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