Data center operations rely on significant security measures to protect their data, equipment and resources. However, as data becomes more valuable to both businesses and criminals, the ways the latter seeks to acquire it continue to expand. Ultimately, firms won’t be able to keep up with data thieves if they don’t update their security measures on multiple fronts.

Many companies and data center providers are heavily focused on protecting their data from cyberthreats. This has resulted in an imbalance of security that leaves servers and machines vulnerable to attack on another front – a physical one. More firms are seeing data theft in the form of hard drives and laptops being stolen and actual beaches of their server cabinets, both from internal threats and outside ones. As such, businesses need to optimize their physical security as well as digital.

Regardless of how a company plans to optimize its security, biometric technology offers the best solution to minimize threats without affecting data center operations, and can even enhance workflow in some ways.

User authentication
The first step that biometric security removes from the data protection chain is the need to carry around keys, key​ cards or remember a password. The user becomes the authentication “device,” him or herself, gaining access with a mere touch. This helps ensure that data center staff isn’t locked out of a server cabinet because they forgot their keys, or mis-entered a password on a keypad. Furthermore, this can enhance productivity by expediting access to hardware, which is particularly important should something go physically wrong with the equipment.

Dual custody
Another advantage that biometrics offers is that of dual custody. Should a business have particularly sensitive data it needs to protect, it can ensure that any single employee cannot access it alone through dual custody. This chain of command only unlocks the server room or cabinet when two authorized parties are present, and can be implemented independently from the rest of the security system to protect a single server rack or an entire room.

Physical protection backed by software
Another key advantage to biometrics is that while the security is physical, anytime it needs to be updated or enhanced it often lands on the management software. This makes these solutions easier to upgrade and apply patches for improvement, without having to replace the physical hardware. Furthermore, employee identification is stored in encrypted, binary code, to ensure that access is heavily restricted and protected, unlike keys which can be copied, cards that can be faked and passwords that can be cracked.

Multi-configuration solutions
Once the system is in place, companies can customize and change their level of protection as needed. In a colocation center fingerprint scanners can be equipped to the racks themselves to protect the servers themselves, while in a company owned facility entire building access control can land on biometrics. having options also lets firms scale their security as needed, should threats rise or subside in the future.

The ability to set up a mantrap, or anti-passback system is another great advantage of biometrics. While a thief might use illicit means to gain entry, and anti-passback system also demands biometric authentication to exit as well, locking the criminal in once inside.

With so many additional functionalities and features of biometric building access solutions, this technology presents an answer to the security needs of modern data centers that businesses can ill afford to ignore. By investing in high-quality strategies now, firms will be able to optimize their data center security and prepare for future threats with ease.