DB Administration, Security and Compliance for First Distribution

DB Administration, Security and Compliance for First Distribution

First Distribution’s Database Administration, Security and Compliance needs lead it to trusted advisor, Ascent Technology. For any large organisation, Database Administration (DBA) is a vital part of maintaining their Data Platform Operations effectively. As it has...

Ascent Technology helps Bidfood SA migrate to Microsoft Azure

When Bidfood SA chose to modernise and migrate its data platform to Microsoft Azure, it turned to Ascent Technology for help. In a world that is digitally transforming, it is more vital than ever to an organisation’s success to utilise the latest platforms to drive...

Ascent Technology helps migrate Phumelela Gaming to Azure

A Windows Server and SQL Server consolidation, optimisation and migration to Microsoft Azure enables the company to reduce costs, modernise its data platform and boost its innovation capabilities. As an operator running two distinct betting businesses, Phumelela...


Database System Health Check Service from Ascent Technology

Database System Health Check Service from Ascent Technology

A Database System Health Check assesses if your Database is running optimally, and can help diagnose challenges before performance issues, and/or down time affect your users. That’s where Ascent's Database Health Check Service comes in. Our Database Health Check...

Database Security and Compliance with DB Shield

The growing number of threats to databases and unauthorised access to the data within, is clearly creating on-going headaches for CIOs. Solving these headaches may not be easy, but by asking the right questions, CIOs can begin to overcome their Database Security and...

Database Administration and Support Service from Ascent Technology

Economic volatility is driving a greater number of organisations to consider cost cutting measures and to implement consolidation procedures. This situation is further compounded by the growing skills shortage that makes it more difficult for businesses to acquire and...


Microsoft Data and Analytics Partner of the Year Finalist

Microsoft Data and Analytics Partner of the Year Finalist

Ascent Technology continues its strong showing in the Microsoft Partner of the Year awards, as a finalist in the Data and Analytics Partner of the Year award. Finalist Data and Analytics Partner of the Year "It is always gratifying to be recognised by Microsoft as one...



From the Desk of the MD – January 2019

From the Desk of the MD – January 2019

The start of another year inevitably brings with it the promise of change, and in wishing all our clients a happy New Year, we would like to suggest that 2019 is going to be a year of considerable and exciting change. After all, not only do we have what are sure to be...

From the Desk of the MD

From the Desk of the MD – March 2011

17 Mar 2011

Welcome to the first Ascent newsletter for 2011. As we reach our financial year end, and close what has been a successful year for Ascent, we are never the less reminded of the many challenges both we and our customers face. Notable amongst these are the issues that can have a particular impact on an organisation’s financials, such as security and compliance. This is of particular importance in light of the current and forthcoming laws, regulations and standards focusing on these areas.

With both the new Companies Act and the Protection of Personal Information (POPI) bill expected to come into force this year, and the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standards (PCI DSS) already having an impact on businesses, it is crucial for organisations to ensure they are doing all they can to protect customer data.

Globally, there has been a worrying increase in incidents of fraud, due to compromised data. Therefore, companies need to focus on the manner in which they collect and store information. They also need to proactively monitor their databases, to ensure that any suspicious activity raises an alert.

This is where Ascent Technology comes in. As a trusted advisor to our customers, and with our deep understanding of complex database environments, we are ideally positioned to assist with such scenarios.

Trusting Ascent Technology

As we mentioned in our newsflash last month, Ascent’s customers can now gain access to the newest revolution in the database arena – IBM’s InfoSphere Guardium Real Time Database Activity Monitoring. Guardium is a simple and robust solution which is designed to ensure the privacy and integrity of a company’s information.

This is a solution which is able to both avert cyber attacks, by proactively monitoring activity within the database, as well as prevent database leaks. It is also capable of identifying end user fraud and of monitoring and preventing malicious activity by privileged users, such as database administrators, developers and outsourced personnel. Additionally, it is able to assist organisations to reduce costs, through its ability to automate the entire compliance auditing process in a heterogeneous database environment.

However, what Guardium offers is more than just a database solution, since the areas it covers and the challenges it solves all have a direct bearing on the issues of security and compliance raised in PCI DSS, POPI and the new Companies Act. By addressing database security and the auditing needs across the enterprise, as well as securing sensitive data from a wide variety of sources, such as financial statements, personnel records and intellectual property, Guardium is the ideal answer to a challenge that is growing in severity every year.

Delivering on your needs

Guardium is able to provide automated assessment of database vulnerabilities and environmental configuration risks, along with real-time tools, metrics and recommendations for the proactive improvement of security lifecycle, for both PCI and non-PCI DSS environments.

In addition, this solution is able to create a secure, detailed and verifiable audit trail of all database activities, including those of privileged users. In addition, it increases operational efficiency by automating the entire compliance reporting cycle across all systems, applications and database management solutions, including report generation, distribution, issue escalation and sign-offs.

It can automatically locate and classify sensitive information, such as cardholder data and provides 100% visibility at a granular level into all database transactions involving sensitive data. It is also able to monitor and enforce a wide range of policies such as restricting sensitive data access, privileged user actions and database change control.

Finally, Guardium can also create a secure, centralised audit repository across large numbers of heterogeneous systems and databases, as well as automating the entire compliance auditing process.

With the numerous pieces of new legislation looming large and compliance and security growing in importance all the time, Ascent is excited to be able to offer a solution of this nature to its customers. This is yet another demonstration of our commitment to adding value to our customerbase and once again highlights our ability to deliver what our clients need, when they need it.

The last word

Last month we shared with you that Ascent is taking things to the next level and we are inviting all our clients and people to join us. We have launched a new press Press Office hosted on ITWeb, customers can see what is new in the world of database management at our Data Management Portal hosted on ITWeb, and for all the latest Ascent ins and outs, follow us on Twitter @AscentTech @AscentTech. So the real question then is: have you joined us on Twitter yet?

By: Johan Lamberts