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24 January 2018

Remove the risk of a data breach from user error – today, tomorrow… and even yesterday

Mathew Richards

User error accounts for 52% of security breaches in organisations.

It’s no wonder that IT managers consider it to be their biggest security threat, according to a report from Node4.

One of the leading errors made by employees is sending sensitive documents and information to unintended recipients.

The continued growth of social collaboration and mobile working means the collection and storage of data will continue to expose organisations to evolving security risks. However, there are procedures and technologies that can help to protect sensitive information and minimise the potential impact of leaked, or stolen data…

 

Azure Information Protection: Keep your latest files secure

No matter where an organisation’s sensitive data is stored, or who it’s shared with, Microsoft’s Azure Information Protection enables easy Classification, Labelling and Protection (CLP).

At the time of creating or modifying a document, Azure Information Protection enables the user to classify and label data based on the source, content and context of that data. By helping the user to make the right choices at the point of document creation, the risk of human error is reduced.

Protection wherever your data goes

Regardless of where your data is located and who it is shared with; the classification, labelling and protection information travels with it. This means that your information is protected at all times, minimising the chance of sensitive data getting into the wrong hands, even if done accidentally.

Secure data with one-click options

Simple, intuitive controls mean there are no excuses not to apply the relevant protection to a document. Data classification and protection controls are integrated into Office. This provides one-click options to secure data that users are working on.

Track activities and revoke access

Should sensitive data get into the wrong hands, access to that particular document can be revoked by a document owner in a couple of clicks. So, if an email attachment containing sensitive data is accidentally sent to the wrong recipient, access to that data can be immediately revoked, meaning the recipient can no longer gain access to it.

 

And your existing data?

Azure Information Protection is a powerful solution for protecting data being created now and in the future, but there is still a big challenge for organisations to identify, classify and protect information created in the past.

This challenge, alongside the increasing requirement to meet data security standards and compliance regulations, means that it is essential for organisations to go back and identify files to apply the same classification and protection rules to all historical data.

It can be difficult to know where to start.

Many organisations are unaware of all the data they have and where it resides, let alone how they go about classifying, labelling and applying the appropriate levels of protection.

Using artificial intelligence to protect sensitive information

GridView from MinerEye is a self-learning information protection solution that automatically identifies confidential data and enforces rules and polices. It learns the structure of data through advanced scanning technology and machine-based learning.

Discover and identify all your historical data

Upon installation, the system extracts patterns out of confidential information in any format, across both structured and unstructured data, by learning the way it is constructed. The system scans the network to discover and assess all historical data, identify similar patterns, and then it automatically applies an organisation’s information protection rules and polices.

This isn’t a one-off activity, with structured and unstructured data growing exponentially. GridView integrates with Microsoft’s Azure Information Protection to continuously search for sensitive data, and provides a holistic multi-stage solution to Assess, Identify and Protect.

For example, if the system recognises that a financial report is always located in finance and accounting folders, and then identifies it has been shared by customer services devices, the system spots this abnormal behaviour. As a result, it automatically applies a location based policy and then protects it, through its integration with Azure Information Protection.

 

Conclusion

Technologies such as Microsoft Azure Information Protection and MinerEye GridView make it easier to protect, control and audit sensitive information throughout its life-cycle.

Using these integrated information protection technologies to safeguard your sensitive data mitigates the impact of a data leak, whether from outside or within your organisation – and whether deliberate or not.

Next, watch our conditional access and MFA webinar on-demand and learn why these technologies are key to securing your organisation’s assets.

Or download ‘The business case for cyber security’ e-Guide for best practice on how to take a proactive and pre-emptive approach to tackling the issue.

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Author
Mathew Richards
Head of Mobility & Security
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ThirdSpace

Welcome to ThirdSpace, the new home (and new name) for Oxford Computer Group UK.

Oxford Computer Group UK officially rebranded as ThirdSpace in the UK on 16 October. This rebrand reflects our broadening identity and security solutions, as working practices extend from the office and home into working flexibly and collaboratively from anywhere – Your "ThirdSpace".

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