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Data Leakage Prevention (DLP) Strategies

Preventing data loss is now a priority for many organisations.

Last week our blog talked about rating your level of information security, following a report issued by Price Waterhouse Coopers claiming that security breaches are a continuing problem.

Data Leakage Prevention

Data leakage prevention technologies are now becoming more commonplace as organisations seek to counter this issue.

With so many ways for data to leave an organisation, which DLP technology should be implemented?  Such technologies include intrusion detection, encryption, auditing and email filtering.  But how realistic is this technology in preventing all data leakages?

GregaVrhovec, a researcher from the Information Security Forum,

“in terms of stopping malicious attempts to steal data, DLP is not as efficient.  Many can monitor the network and block activity, but there are many business processes they haven’t counted on that can bypass that”.

Even those organisations with a comprehensive DLP strategy can’t stop employees from printing out information, saving it to a memory stick, writing it down and removing it from the building, or simply employee mistakes.  CYFOR responded to such an incident last month when we received a call to our emergency number to investigate a potentially serious breach.  A laptop was stolen containing unencrypted customer data and the login details were in the laptop bag.  We averted the incident but this case study illustrates that data leakage risks are very real – read more.

Employees may be seen by some to be the largest data leakage threat to an organisation.  The 2006 e-Crime Watch Survey conducted by the US Secret Service and SEI CERT for CSO Magazine found that in cases where respondents could identify the perpetrator of an electronic crime, 32% were committed by insiders.

Although DLP technologies are available, they are more effective when combined with an information security strategy in order for the organisation to protect itself as much as possible.

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