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What Is a Secure Transmission?

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  • Written By: Malcolm Tatum
  • Edited By: Bronwyn Harris
  • Last Modified Date: 19 October 2014
  • Copyright Protected:
    2003-2014
    Conjecture Corporation
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A secure transmission refers to a process that involves protecting access to proprietary data as it is being transferred from a point of origin to a point of termination. Providing this secure transfer of data is very important in a number of business activities, including access to data within a network or even with something as simple as placing an order at an online retail site. The idea of a secure transmission is to make sure that only the recipient authorized by the sender actually receives the transmitted data, and that there are no opportunities for interception and duplication in between the sender and that recipient.

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Ensuring secure transmission of data is crucial to the operation of many business and governmental entities. Businesses collect proprietary and confidential data that has to do with clients, product formulas, data on research and development, and finances that is not intended for release to individuals outside the company structure. For this reason, it is not unusual for companies to require that certain types of transmissions be protected in some manner, so that only authorized individuals may receive and make use of the data. One of the more common ways to manage this is by encryption, which essentially prevents anyone without the proper authorizations and codes from accessing and making use of the data in any manner. Typically, internal computer security measures are put in place to identify any attempts to breach the encryption, and shut down the effort as quickly as possible.

A viable secure transmission strategy helps to minimize the potential for data interception in a number of ways. The strategy will involve preventing the use of spoofing, in which a hacker attempts to access the data by masking as an authorized user. This approach will also include fail safes that help to identify the physical breach of copper or fiber optics used to intercept, copy, and possibly alter the transmission at a point between the sender and the recipient. For example, an online retailer who has properly secured the purchasing process makes it possible for customers to enter personal information including credit or debit car numbers and masks them from any unauthorized attempt to read the detail of the transaction during or even after the execution.

It is important to note that even a secure transmission may be breached at some point, given the constant advances in technology that can render older protections ineffectual. For this reason, information system professionals tend to constantly be on the lookout for ways to enhance the protections that are in place, keeping the network from being subject to emerging threats. Along with consistent upgrades, the effort to maintain secure transmission protocols will also involve constantly monitoring network activity and taking swift action to investigate and deal with any anomalies that are identified.

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