Swiss Re encrypts data to guard against theft


Swiss Re encrypts data to guard against theft

Bill Goodwin
Insurance company Swiss Re is rolling out encryption software to secure confidential data held on laptops, desktop computers, and portable memory devices used by its 8,000 staff.

The project is designed to protect confidential data if staff lose equipment or it is stolen.

The company, which has a Windows XP infrastructure, plans to roll out Pointsec media encryption software across its network. The software encrypts a PC's entire hard disc, protecting temporary files as well as raw company data. It also encrypts data transferred to portable storage media such as USB memory sticks.

Customers and business partners that do not have the Pointsec software will be able to read the data by typing in a password. However, if an encrypted laptop is stolen, the thief should not be able to read the data stored on it. All that is lost is the hardware.

"Users have back-ups of their data, so they can quickly get a new computer and start working with their data again," said Fredi Schmid, executive project manager at Swiss Re.

Swiss Re chose the Pointsec technology after evaluating systems from 30 suppliers. The company rolled out Pointsec for PC to 2,000 laptops last year. This year it plans to roll out software to protect data stored on plug-in devices such as memory sticks and floppy discs, said Schmid.

The key to secure data >>

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