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What is Data Security?

Before we dive into the definition of data security, we need to understand fully what is data?

Data is a set of facts (numbers, words, and so on) that have been turned into a computer-readable format.

Whatever business you work in or what interests you, you have almost surely heard a tale about how "data" is transforming the face of our world. It may be used in research to help cure an illness, increase a company's income, make a building more efficient, or be the source of those tailored adverts you are constantly seeing.

In most cases, data is just another name for information. However, in computers and business (much of what you read about in the news regarding data, especially when it comes to Big Data), data refers to information that is machine-readable rather than human-readable.

Data security is the process of safeguarding an organization's data's confidentiality, integrity, and availability in line with its risk strategy. Preventing unauthorized access, data corruption, and denial of service attacks are all critical elements of data security and a vital part of IT for enterprises of all sizes and types. To keep data safe from attacks, consistent, dependable, and secure access to database records, system files, user files, and client data is vital. Companies must have a security architecture and response plan in place before an issue occurs.

What does data security, which is one of the most valuable assets of businesses, mean?

What does Data Security Mean?

Data security refers to digital privacy safeguards used to prevent unwanted access to computers, databases, and websites. Data security also safeguards against data corruption. Data security is a critical component of IT for firms of all sizes and types.

Information security (IS) or computer security are other terms for data security.

What are Types of Data Security?

There are different ways of protecting your data from any harm. We can summarize Data security types under the four headings:

  • Data Erasure
  • Data Masking
  • Data Resiliency
  • Encryption

1. Data Erasure

To safeguard your data, you'll want to appropriately dispose of data on a regular basis. Data erasure, which is more secure than normal data wiping, uses software to totally wipe data on any storage device. Data erasure is the process of overwriting existing data on a storage sector with binary patterns such as '1s' and '0s' or meaningless pseudo-random patterns in order to delete or cleanse it.

In general, data erasure, often known as data destruction, seeks to delete or sanitize data in order to render it utterly useless. In other words, after being wiped or overwritten with binary patterns, the data becomes unintelligible. The data is unrecoverable and so will not get into the hands of the wrong people.

2. Data Masking

Data masking is a technique for creating a faked but realistic replica of your organization's data. The purpose is to safeguard sensitive data while also offering a functioning replacement when actual data is not required, such as in user training, sales demos, or software testing.

Data masking procedures alter the values of data while maintaining the same format. The objective is to develop a version that cannot be decoded or reverse engineered. Character shuffling, word or character replacement, and encryption are all methods for modifying the data.

3. Data Resiliency

In its most basic form, data resilience refers to data's capacity to "recover" after being compromised. For example, data resilience is enabled by the cloud since data may be kept in numerous places, with no one site being superior to the other as long as the data is uncorrupted and easy to recover in the event that a location fails. If the second site allows complete data access, the data is considered robust, and so on. If all locations fail, the company loses access to its data and, at the very least, incurs downtime costs. Clearly, the data is no longer robust.

Traditional security methods are no longer sufficient in today's world. Cybercriminals are cunning in their approach, and it is fair to expect cyber attackers to get access to the organization's computer systems at some point. Data resilience is critical for enterprises in order to assist the team in developing tactics that will endure massive cybercrime.

4. Encryption

Data encryption is used to prevent hostile or careless individuals from gaining access to sensitive data. Encryption, a crucial layer of protection in a cybersecurity architecture, makes it as difficult as possible to use intercepted data. It may be used to safeguard data ranging from confidential government information to personal credit card transactions. Data encryption technology, often known as an encryption algorithm or cipher, is used to create an encryption system that can be broken only with a considerable amount of processing power.

The goal of data encryption is to safeguard the secrecy of digital data while it is stored on computer systems and delivered across the internet or other computer networks. The obsolete data encryption standard (DES) has been superseded by current encryption algorithms, which are crucial in the security of IT systems and communications.

These algorithms provide secrecy and are at the heart of essential security activities like authentication, integrity, and non-repudiation. Authentication allows for the verification of a communication's origin, while integrity ensures that the contents of a message have not changed since it was delivered.

Why is Data Security Important?

In an age where data is the most precious asset, safeguarding that value is paramount. Communications, databases, infrastructure, transactions, and knowledge; data is probably an organization's most important asset. Regardless of legal or regulatory obligations, it is in a company's best interests to keep its information secure.

Data security is used to protect data against irrelevant and illegal access throughout its existence. Data security is the use of excellent security so that a person's privacy is preserved and undesired sources do not impact the data.

Data security refers to safeguards put in place to prevent illegal access to databases, websites, and computers. This procedure also includes a safeguard against data loss or corruption. Every business today, whether it is a small or local firm or a major corporation, should not underestimate the need of employing security measures. Failure to have a sufficient information security plan in place, which can have serious ramifications for enterprises. Here are some of the reasons why organizations need an information security plan:

  • To Maintain Business Continuity
  • To Prevent Data Breach
  • In order to prevent unwanted access,

What are Data Security Risks?

The following are some of the most typical difficulties that businesses of all sizes encounter when attempting to safeguard sensitive data.

1. Phishing and Other Social Engineering Attacks

Social engineering attacks are a common way for attackers to get access to sensitive data. They entail deceiving or tricking someone into disclosing confidential information or gaining access to privileged accounts.

Phishing is a type of social engineering that is rather widespread. Messages that look to be from a reputable source but are really transmitted by an attacker are involved. Attackers can corrupt a victim's device or obtain access to a corporate network if they agree, such as by supplying confidential information or clicking on a malicious link.

2. Accidental Exposure

A substantial number of data breaches are the consequence of negligence or inadvertent disclosure of sensitive data rather than a deliberate attempt. Employees in a business frequently share, allow access to, lose, or mishandle valuable data, either by mistake or because they are unaware of security standards.

Employee training, as well as other measures such as data loss prevention (DLP) technology and increased access restrictions, can help to solve this critical issue.

3. Ransomware

Ransomware is a severe risk to data in businesses of all sizes. Ransomware is a type of virus that infects business equipment and encrypts data, rendering it unusable without the decryption key. Attackers display a ransom notice requesting money in order to release the key; however, in many situations, even paying the ransom is futile, and the data is destroyed.

Many varieties of ransomware are capable of swiftly spreading and infecting substantial portions of a business network. If a company does not keep frequent backups, or if the ransomware infects the backup systems, there may be no way to recover.

4. Data Loss in the Cloud

While it is exceedingly improbable that a large internet service provider may lose your data or have a total service outage, there are a number of additional reasons for data loss that are quite real and occur on a regular basis, including:

User error occurs when you or a coworker inadvertently deletes, modifies, or corrupts data. According to Kroll Ontrack, computer forensics and E-Disclosure business, human error accounts for 40% of all data loss.

Malicious Destruction: The malicious destruction, manipulation, or corruption of your data by an unhappy employee, either outside or within.

Third-party apps: Data corruption caused by software flaws in third-party programs and plug-ins.

Service Provider: Loss of data or services as a result of hacking, such as the high-profile service provider incident, or if the service provider disables your account.

What is Data Security Solutions?

We've compiled a list of the best 8 data security solutions for securing sensitive data and passing audits to help you enhance your security and compliance posture.

What is Data Security Solutions?

Figure 1. What is Data Security Solutions?

1. Data Discovery and Classification Tools

To adequately protect your data, you must first understand what sensitive information you have. Data discovery and classification solution will scan your data repositories for the types of data you consider important, based on industry standards or your custom requirements (such as PCI DSS data, GDPR data, and IP), classify it, and clearly label it with a digital signature indicating its classification. You may use those labels to direct your data security resources and develop rules that secure data based on its importance to the company. When data is changed, the categorization can be revised.

Controls should be in place, however, to prevent users from misrepresenting the classification level; for example, only authorized users should be allowed to reduce data categorization.

2. Vulnerability Assessment and Risk Analysis Tools

It is obvious that vulnerability assessment is a vital input into risk assessment, therefore both exercises are critical in safeguarding an organization's information assets and boosting its chance of fulfilling its purpose and objectives. Vulnerability identification and mitigation can help to reduce the likelihood and effect of threats materializing at the system, human, or process levels. Performing one without the other, on the other hand, leaves your firm more vulnerable to the unknown.

A few mostly used tools for vulnerability assessment are;

  • Nessus
  • Netsparker
  • Nmap
  • OpenVAS

For risk assessment tools we can list the 3 major vendors.

  • Netwrix
  • Galvanize
  • MetricStream

3. Data and File Activity Monitoring

Every day, companies must handle a flood of unstructured material, including papers, spreadsheets, web pages, presentations, chat logs, multimedia, and more, all of which include sensitive data that must be protected. In reality, unstructured data accounts for over 80% of the information generated and used by the average organization. As the frequency of attacks on company data grows, so do the costs of a data breach. Monitoring the "who, what, where, when, and how" of data access is more critical than ever, allowing firms to satisfy compliance requirements while reducing the risk of a massive data breach.

User activity monitoring software monitors the behavior of users in your IT environment in order to detect suspicious behavior. User activity monitoring reduces the risk of downtime, data breaches, and compliance fines by assisting you in detecting malevolent insiders, compromised accounts, malware infections, and other problems as soon as they occur. A UAM solution, for example, may identify that a privileged user added a user account to the powerful Domain Admins group, significantly increasing the user's access.

4. Data Masking

Data masking, also known as data obfuscation, conceals the true content of data by employing changed information such as letters or numbers.

The basic purpose of data masking is to generate a different version of data that cannot be easily identified or reverse engineered, therefore protecting sensitive data. Importantly, the data will be consistent across numerous databases, yet the usability will not alter.

Several forms of data may be protected via masking, however, the following are some examples:

  • PII stands for personally identifiable information.
  • PHI stands for protected health information.
  • PCI-DSS: Payment card information security standard
  • Intellectual property (ITAR)

Data masking is most commonly used in non-production contexts such as software development and testing, user training, and so on, areas that do not require actual data.

5. Data Loss Prevention

Data loss prevention (DLP) is a collection of technologies and processes that guarantee sensitive data is not lost, abused, or accessed by unauthorized individuals. DLP software categorizes regulated, sensitive, and business-critical data and detects violations of regulations created by businesses or within a predetermined policy pack, which are often driven by regulatory compliance such as HIPAA, PCI-DSS, or GDPR. Once such violations have been recognized, DLP enforces remediation through notifications, encryption, and other protective measures to prevent end-users from disclosing data that might put the company in danger.

Software and solutions for preventing data loss endpoint actions are monitored and controlled, data streams on corporate networks are filtered, and data in the cloud is monitored to secure data at rest, in motion, and in use. DLP generates reports to fulfill compliance and auditing standards, as well as to highlight areas of vulnerability and anomalies for forensics and IR.

6. Anti-Malware, Antivirus, and Endpoint Protection

Malware is a general word for malicious computer programs that are designed to inflict harm and exploit weaknesses in a system, service, or computer network.

Anti-malware software is specifically developed to assist in the removal of malware from your computer system.

The bulk of antimalware programs begin by extensively scanning the files on your system. They then discover potentially harmful files on your machine. After that, the antimalware program will erase these files from your computer.

Antivirus software is meant to detect recognized viruses as well as other malware such as Ransomware, Trojan Horses, worms, spyware, adware, and so on, which can be harmful to the user or device.

Antivirus software offers protection against known dangers for your data.

An endpoint is a physical device, such as a laptop, phone, computer, virtual environment, or server, from which the user sends data requests and receives results.

Endpoints are critical sensitive points of entry for hackers. Endpoints are the points from which attackers exploit vulnerabilities and assets are encrypted and exfiltrated.

Endpoint security, on the other hand, protects devices from cyber-attacks and keeps data secure. Endpoint security has to identify and evaluate possible security risks before taking action to neutralize the attack.

7. Authentication and Authorization

The process of validating that users are who they claim they are is known as authentication. The first step in every security procedure.

Authentication assures that the user seeking to access or enter the network is a network member, preventing unlawful invasions.

The process of providing someone access to a certain resource or function is known as authorization.

This term is usually used interchangeably with access control or access privilege.

8. Data Security Audits

Data security audits are an excellent approach to examine what information you have, how it flows, and who has access to it to create a design flow document. Understanding how sensitive information flows into, through, and out of your organization, as well as who has or may have access to this information, is critical for analyzing security threats.

What is Data Security Compliance?

What level and type of data security do you require? One possible answer is: enough to keep your data safe. However, that is an insufficiently specific response.

One place to begin is with the question, "What will meet my company's legal obligations?"

This means: What rules and regulations must your data security comply with, whether from the government(s) or your sector and what do these policies designate as the least essential protection(s)?

Data security compliance rules aim to assist businesses in achieving the integrity, security, and availability of information systems and sensitive data. They give a set of rules and standards to assist enterprises in protecting their systems and data against security threats.

How Sunny Valley Ensures Data Security?

At Sunny Valley Networks, we have implemented measures designed to secure your personal information from accidental loss and unauthorized access, use, alteration, and disclosure. All information you provide to us is stored on our secure servers behind firewalls. The safety and security of your information also depend on you. Where we have given you (or where you have chosen) a password for access to certain parts of our Website or Platform, you are responsible for keeping this password confidential. We ask you not to share your password with anyone.

Because adding additional authentication procedures to the authentication process often adds an extra degree of protection, Cloud Central Management Portal offers two-factor authentication as an option. We strongly advise you to utilize two-factor authentication (2FA) for your account.

To ensure that traffic between your firewall and Sunny Valley Networks Cloud Servers is secure and trusted, 2048-bit RSA keys and Mutual TLS (mTLS) authentication are used. 256-bit AES encryption protects the communication between your firewall and SVN Cloud servers.

The privacy-first architecture prioritizes storing as little data as possible on the backend servers and storing all data on your devices, which can be downloaded on-demand when you request access using the Cloud Interface.

We anonymize data and aggregate data for statistics:

If you opt-in from the Software user interface, our Software may send certain information to our Cloud Threat Intelligence & Reputation Server. We will use this information to provide you with the threat intelligence and web categorization service.

The information sent includes information about your computer or device on which the Software is running, including outer IP address, and Sunny Valley Networks unique machine identifier, and specific information regarding remote connections like remote IP address, hostname, port number, and URL.

Sunny Valley Networks comply with these regulations

  • California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA)
  • General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR)
  • The Children's Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA)

What is Data Security in Cloud Computing?

Data security has long been a big concern in the IT industry. Data security is very important in the cloud computing environment since data is dispersed over several machines and storage devices such as servers, PCs, and various mobile devices. Cloud computing data security is more challenging than traditional information system data security.

Businesses of all sizes are migrating to the cloud to take advantage of increased data availability, considerable cost savings, and data redundancy that cloud computing offers over traditional data center-based physical infrastructure. Moving to the cloud may help minimize shadow IT by removing datastores from storage closets and beneath desks, allowing them to be managed and safeguarded in accordance with rules and best practices.

What is a Data Security Analyst?

Data security analysts are responsible for securing a company's or organization's computer systems and networks. They are sometimes the only people standing between hackers and a company's networks, and their skills are in high demand right now. A data security analyst position is ideal for anybody with an interest in computers or information technology. The majority of data security analysts work full-time hours, with many working more than 40 hours each week. The majority of data security analysts are men, but as recruiters make a greater focus on diversity, more women are projected to enter the industry.