Written on the 12 September 2011 by Tom Reid


THE security credentials of web hosting firm’s across Australia have been thrust into the spotlight following the recent high-profile hack of Sydney’s Distribute.IT, which led to 4800 clients losing data.

The founder and director of web development company Bloomtools says the security breach has had widespread implications for the industry.

James Greig says that with many re-sellers and budget web hosting businesses flooding the, the case has in fact assisted service providers which take security seriously.

“The hacking of Distribute.IT in June is the worst security breach in the history of Australian web hosting. Thousands of businesses, mostly SMEs, lost everything – it was terrible,” says Greig.

“As a result we’re seeing a renewed focus on security from consumers of these services, whereas in the past people were often just looking for the cheapest deal.

“Many clients of Distribute.IT were resellers of their services, so the data loss affected third party customers who may have thought their service provider was independent. The destruction was so widespread because of the number of resellers in the market.”

In the wake of the security scandal, Distribute.IT was acquired by The Netregistry Group for an undisclosed sum.

Greig says business clients in particular have become more aware of the security measures and procedures put in place by their web hosting and development provider.

He says security in the complex IT sector is ‘a sophisticated, multi-faceted topic’, but it’s easy to differentiate those companies that are proactive in protecting client data.

“Following these recent events, businesses have actually begun considering what would happen if they lost all their website data, all their emails and other intellectual property,” he says.

“For smaller companies it is harder to reach that level of security that your clients need and that’s where things can fall down. Rather than hinder Bloomtools however, it’s been advantageous for us.

“We recently released a white paper detailing all the complex security policies and procedures we employ to protect our clients. In reality it’s unlikely our clients will understand all the intricate IT details, but at least they have an understanding that their service provider is putting the upmost effort into securing their IT assets.”

Author: Tom Reid





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