Not sure this is the right place to ask this but I'll give a shot.

I've been asked to implement a system about criminality data. The data is security sensitive, in that it contains information about crimes done by certain people in a violent context and delicate country.

Actually, the application will only have 4-5 users. Maybe a handful more later. Nevertheless they are distributed and thus there should be access over a network.

They currently run a Windows server. I am highly experienced in linux environments, my Windows server is quite dated.

What could be a good setup for such an application? If I installed it at their own premises, which seems to be their preferred approach, how would I go about providing access to the users? Is a VPN a good approach? Any relevant info about how to do this with Windows? Can I do it without having to host the app on the Internet? Other suggestions?

Not sure if a standard web application hosted on a server somewhere on the Internet could be sufficient.

I apologize if the question is too vague. I am happy to try to provide more information if I can. I am an experienced developer but not so much a system engineer.

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    Who asked you to do it? Why did they ask you? Did you schmooze them into thinking you're a systems architect with the experience to pull this off? Sep 17, 2013 at 7:59
  • Tom, I feel the first two questions are legitimate, the last is an unfounded insinuation of yours. I have been asked by a friend of mine who works there, and he told me "I know you are a developer, can you build a database application?" That's about it. It was my experience who actually prompted me to ask if data is security-sensitive. He didn't even know, it was his boss who said so. Sep 17, 2013 at 15:53

1 Answer 1


By your own admission you're not a system administrator nor security administrator. So if the data is as sensitive as you describe, hire someone who is experienced in the role. At the very least in a consultative/advisory role even if they don't do the actual work.

Based on TomTom's comment, I thought I should add a note about the possible legal implications of a failed implementation that make doing it yourself not worth the risk to yourself and/or the company asking you to do it.

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    +1 (I wish I could upvote more highly) Sep 17, 2013 at 7:44
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    +1 too. The approach of asking for help wont help - I need to cook a 5 star menu, I am a bad cook, tell me what to do. If this is security sensitive you hire a professional. And pay. A lot - this is not "hosting on a cheap VPS or in the cloud" for obvious legal reasons.
    – TomTom
    Sep 17, 2013 at 8:31
  • I could design the system for OP, but it'd cost a serious chunk of money, both for time, and danger money. Sep 17, 2013 at 8:37

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