DATA PROTECTION – How Secured is Organizational Data?

Oct 8, 2019

Over 2.5 quintillion bytes of data are created every single day, and it’s only going to grow further each day. By 2020, it’s estimated that 1.7MB of data will be created every second for every person on earth. As much as today is the time of information, it is also a time with a dire need to protect data – an invaluable resource that can build or destroy corporates and nations, if fallen in the wrong hands.

How important is it to implement Data Protection in your organization?

The answer is, it’s of paramount importance.

The initial step towards protecting data commences with Data Classification; filtering old and unused data in your organization. Think of how you save files on your computer assuming you will need it at some time in the future. When searching for a specific file you realize that you no longer remember what most of the files you come across are about. In an organization, data can get collected a hundred times more than in a personal computer. Therefore, regular classification using suitable engines will help to catalogue the data.

Data classification starts with data discovery, this stage will prompt you to identify important data to the business and the level of importance as which will be classified in the next stage, the filtered data will be classified based on criticality as Confidential, High Critical and Low Critical. The classification is done using data tags and meta data. While data classification differs from one industry to another, it assures that financial data, source codes, confidential organization information and other critical data is classified making it easier to protect.

Once the data is scanned and classified, the policies can be applied.

Data Leakage Protection comes to play following Data Classification. DLP takes into consideration the context – how, where and the file type, as well as the content – the type of information. Based on the data classification, DLP Controls sending information out through a multitude of channels. It identifies user behavior and can flag suspicious data sharing. Through controls set in place, an analysis of critical employees of the organization can be provided and notifications on blocked or quarantined e-mails sent to the senior management.

The transparent mapping of the workflow provides visibility of the users that work on the classified data. This can act as a blueprint in recognizing possible breach points and enable quick response during resolution stage. Through a multitude of triggers in place DLP is capable of controlling data leakage in an organization that can otherwise cause severe damages to the confidentiality of a business.

Another process that can aid data protection is Digital (Information) Rights Management. This policy provides to enable the controls for shared documents and becomes valuable for files that are necessarily shared with third parties. With this policy in place, the relevant document is automatically expired after the pre-meditated due date, to ensure that no one has access to it beyond that point. The same process can be used to prevent editing, forwarding, copying , printing and screen capture to the attached documents and embedded mails.

Organizations around the globe are strictly implementing Data Protection to avoid leakage of confidential information. For certain industries such as banking and finance, IT, telecommunication, and technology data protection is a day to day occurrence. However, with the increasing value placed on information, which is even taken to the extent of being monetized, it is imperative that every organization invests on data protection policies and processes to secure confidentiality.

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