Security infrastructure can be at risk if it has been established on the back of a siloed approach, according to Dell Software.

A/NZ managing director, Ian Hodge, said numerous security technologies, such as firewalls, identity management, and auditing software, were build up in silos and have become vulnerable to threats.

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"A lot of this technology originates 20 to 30 years ago, and it does not fit the current environment where the threats are getting more diverse and aggressive," he said.

This architecture may cause issues if a business wants to provide customers with more access to information, or a government agency, such as the tax department, decides it wants to set up a web site where people can come in and access their own information.

"IT administrators will say they can not do that, because there are security issues," Hodge said.

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"Therefore, that has to be put off until the security issues are solved."

By being stuck in the status quo, Hodge said a new opportunity can not be capitalised on and/or additional requirements can not be met.

Accepting the trade-off

This situation has given rise to a "perception of a trade-off," where a business can either grow and open up to risk because of the gaps in the security infrastructure, or sit on its hands and do nothing to remain secure.

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Since the second option is not palatable for innovation, Hodge said organisations may end up taking calculated, or in some cases uncalculated, risks.

"Threats may take the opportunity to penetrate through the gaps of those security silos that have been established," Hodge said.

To deal with a situation like this, Hodge recommends looking at a connected and holistic security approach that does not expose an organisation to those gaps, and in turn, to online threats and attacks.

Patrick Budmar covers consumer and enterprise technology breaking news for IDG Communications. Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_budmar.

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