A Little Paranoia is Good

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I read a lot of history and current events in addition to constantly trying to learn more about databases, data management, compliance, and DevOps. When you combine all these, it might tend to make you just a little bit paranoid.

See, an experienced DBA will tell you that things can go wrong, almost at random. A history nerd will tell you that, well, it may appear random at the time, but if you examine the path that things took, there were plenty of warnings. Whereas, the compliance person will begin to shout about stuff going wrong the whole time. The current events wonk will just be desperately trying to figure out how to avoid the bad outcomes while simultaneously preparing for the bad outcomes.

The DevOps nerd is just off on the side automating all the things!

Seriously though, the more I read about SQL Injection, data privacy, compliance, and our ever-growing data estate, I do get more paranoid about it all. I mean, in the real world, the family and I have a go-bag with just the basics for three days out of the house (see the time a Massachusetts neighborhood exploded). I keep a jumper battery in each of our vehicles because I spent two hours trying to find someone to give me a jump with cables once. Along with the jumper cables, I keep a first aid kit with the “big bandages,” a blanket, poncho and gloves. Emergencies seldom happen in good weather for some reason, and I’ve come up on more accidents with people wandering out on the street than I can count. Heck, I even travel with a little first aid kit with Band-Aids ™ instead of the big bandages. Since I live in the woods and power does go out occasionally, I have a flashlight in every room, every bag, and multiple ones in the vehicles.  (Funny how often I’m the only one pulling out a light at events). Even part of why I decided to learn Ham radio was to have emergency communications when the cell towers are down.

I tend more and more to treat data the same way. I used to think one backup was good. Then it was one tested backup (and the single best test is a restore). But now I know I need additional backups in multiple locations. We need more protection on the data, not less. We need better monitoring to catch SQL Injection because the developers just aren’t going to be allowed to fix the problem. We must have methods in place to protect our production data, not only from hacking, but from accidental access. The single largest problem we may face going forward is compliance violation.

Meanwhile, automate all the things!

Now, I may be crazy, but it doesn’t mean that THEY aren’t out to get my data.

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