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Open Source Cloud Authors: Liz McMillan, Pat Romanski, Elizabeth White, Yakov Fain, Cloud Best Practices Network

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Panzura Adds New Security Options for Cloud Storage

Secure erase, enterprise antivirus connector raise industry benchmarks

Panzura has added new Secure Erase and Enterprise Antivirus Connector technologies in version 5.4.1.0 of its PZOS operating system for the Panzura Global Cloud Storage System. These new features increase security options beyond Panzura's FIPS 140-2 Level 3 encryption, which was announced in February 2013.

"Everywhere you turn these days, another story appears about confidential information getting into the open where it doesn't belong. Whether it is credit card numbers or a company's business-critical files, protecting sensitive data is growing in importance every day, especially for data in the cloud," said Randy Chou, president and CEO of Panzura.

Secure Erase -- Securely Removing Data from the Cloud
Most of the time, security is concerned only with being certain that the data written to the cloud and subsequently retrieved is secure. But sometimes, data in the cloud either was written there accidently or its value has expired and it needs to go away permanently. With Secure Erase, administrators can request that all traces of specified files or folders be removed from cloud storage managed by Panzura. This includes removing data held in snapshots and from all Panzura controllers managing the customer's cloud storage.

Following recommendations put forth by NIST in Draft Publication 800-88 for purging data, Secure Erase is the most complete data erasure method available short of physically destroying the storage media itself. Once completed, the Secure Erase feature provides a report showing the exact steps used to remove the data from the cloud.

Enterprise Antivirus Connector -- An Efficient Way for Virus Scanning of Cloud Data
Protection from viruses and other malware is also a vital component of data protection. Panzura Antivirus Connector allows enterprise-class virus scanners to directly scan cloud data managed by PZOS without any extra hardware or software. Implemented per the current definition for the Internet Content Adaptation Protocol (ICAP), this feature allows a direct plug-in to popular virus scanning applications such as McAfee VirusScan Enterprise (VSE) 8.8 and later. Infected files are quarantined by the Panzura Cloud Storage Controller and subsequently hidden from users. Once scanned, a file is not re-scanned unnecessarily, minimizing overhead frequently associated with virus scanning.

Because all the cloud data stored by the Panzura Cloud Storage Controllers is globally deduplicated, the virus scanning operation only has to make a single pass to ensure data is virus free. This unique capability reduces the impact of virus scanning while simultaneously minimizing the amount of cloud storage actually required. Even though cloud storage is accessed from multiple Cloud Controller locations, a single virus scan is sufficient to protect valuable data.

This new release of PZOS is available at no charge to Panzura customers with current support subscriptions.

More Stories By Elizabeth White

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