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Physical Security VS Cyber Security

29 April, 2016

Physical Security VS Cyber Security


There are many recent examples of what can happen when businesses neglect cyber security or physical security in their data centres. Large scale and high profile cyber-attacks include the Sony hack in which unreleased films were leaked, and more recently the VTech security breach, which resulted in thousands of children’s and parents details stolen. Because of the sensitive data which is available to hackers, a cyber threat is the obvious risk and more emphasis is usually placed on this type of security.

However, physical security is not to be neglected, as data centres can also be targeted in this way. Vodafone was the victim of a large theft at its Basingstoke data centre, which resulted in a disruption to services. One London data centre had £1 million of equipment stolen when thieves disguised themselves as police officers. Of course, theft isn’t the only threat – criminals could wish to target a specific company for political or personal reasons, making physical security measures essential.

Here are some top tips for ensuring all types of security are up to scratch so you’re covered in all events. There is a growing need to focus on physical security to keep it on par with stringent cyber security.


In order to heighten physical security, you need to make sure that the walls of the building doesn’t leave the data centre vulnerable. Would high impact tools be able to penetrate the exterior walls? You should also avoid adding windows unless absolutely necessary, as these are easy to break into. This is something to consider during the data centre design period.

External barriers and perimeter fences

It’s a good plan to have a layered approach to security – which starts a long way from the building itself. Surround the area with fences to deter criminals from using vehicles to damage the data centre or provide an easy getaway.


CCTV systems are used by almost all businesses now as a deterrent to criminals – and can also catch thieves from within. Visible cameras can improve security as well as help to identify intruders after an incident.

CCTV security

Physical presence

Having a physical security presence at your data facility tells criminals you mean business. Internet giants such as Apple and Google have their very own security guards to protect their data centres – with more companies following suit.

Protecting your data from cyber-attacks is important – but don’t forget about the physical threats too.


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