Alien attacks? California destruction? Just part of Google’s disaster recovery plan.

Alien attacks? California destruction? Just part of Google’s disaster recovery plan.

To ensure the company is able to adapt its service in times of national disaster, Google routinely tests its employees on how they would handle an Alien invasion of its offices or if California was wiped off the map, Eran Feigenbaum, Google’s Enterprise director of security has revealed.

The idea of aliens taking over Google sounds a little crazy but these are the sorts of scenarios that the team working on Google Enterprise are faced with as they try to ensure Google’s infrastructure remains operational when the worst truly happens.

Feigenbaum, talking with Computerworld, says:

“We play a lot of games here. Part of our disaster recovery plan is to assume the worst has happened. In last year’s scenario, Google was attacked by aliens and California was off the map. We asked: What do we do? How do we run our infrastructure?”

With years of experience designing and implementing cryptosystems for high-profile clients and government agencies, Feigenbaum spearheads the security strategies for Google’s Enterprise suite, helping to keep Google’s systems operational and secure for its clients:

“On a personal basis, I think the mentalism and profiling makes you curious. It makes you want to attack problems, break them down and not accept the status quo. As a good security professional, I take those same types of skills. That’s really the way we do things a Google; let’s not accept things just because that’s the way it has been done in past. Let’s really attack it, break it down and ask: How can we do this better and change the way computing is done.”

Google employs around 250 security professionals to protect its systems, operating its own infrastructure and custom firewalls. Teams work around the clock, from California and Zurich, to detect, analyse and prevent security incidents. When there is a security incident, Google makes sure to assign it an “incident coordinator” who will then work to diagnose the problem. No matter the problem, Google is contractually permitted to notify its customers, ensuring the customer knows the minute something happens to their data.

The Google director believes reports of the Cloud’s insecurities are overblown, stating that it “is as secure, if not more secure, than what most organisations are doing today.”

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