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Information security: Data protection starts with classification

by Scott Hubert

We’ve been saying for a long time that data classification is the foundation for data security. Because data classification helps you identify the data you have so you can give it the right level of protection.

Data protection is a hot topic right now, with data breaches and misuse of data making the headlines every week. People are concerned about how much of their data is being collected and used by organizations all over the world.

Those same organizations are hiring people who sign information security policies on day one of their employment. The problem is those policies aren’t always accompanied by tools and training that puts the policy into action.

We all know it’s important to keep data secure, but does everyone know what it takes to make that happen?

The importance of information security

It’s become an unquestioned business imperative to protect data of individuals, customers, employees, along with internal sensitive information. GDPR and other regulatory requirements have established standards based on the expectations people have for how their data is handled.

We used to be concerned about the corporate perimeter, but that perimeter has shrunk to the encompass the data itself. And organizations that aren’t evolving risk their reputation and their very existence.

Data security starts with context

Unstructured data – the documents and emails we work with every day – are a smorgasbord of juicy information just waiting to be used for good. Or bad, depending on who has access.

Classifying those documents gives them the context required for security policies to kick in and trigger the right level of protection, ensuring organizational data has the right protection applied.

Enhance security with machine learning

Lately, data security vendors are abuzz with the advantages machine learning adds to the security ecosystem. Imagine creating documents, saving them and knowing the data is accurately and consistently classified and the appropriate protection is applied seamlessly – all within an automated workflow, enhanced by machine learning.

Machine learning brings an intelligent level of protection to organizations so data is protected, and time is saved on the front and back ends of the process.

Protect your data, protect your organization

You can only adequately protect the data you know you have. That’s why data classification is the foundation of data security. It provides context for reporting, triggering the right policies at the right time to keep your organization from facing the ultimate risk to trust: a data breach.

Recently, Jim Barkdoll, CEO of TITUS talked about this with Varun Haran, senior editor with Information Security Media Group. Listen to the full interview to learn more about how data classification can augment your data security strategy.

Scott Hubert, director of product management at TITUS, has a diverse background managing people, projects and process in the development and delivery of data security solutions.