Ensuring Data-Centric Protection and Privacy for Government Agencies

Last Published: Jun 29, 2022 |
Michael R Anderson
Michael R Anderson

Chief Strategist, Public Sector

With exponentially increased adversary threat activities against our government institutions, ensuring that risks to agency data are minimized is a critical mission now. Sensitive data exposure and loss to foreign actors, criminals, and others jeopardizes agencies public trust, endangers constituent safety, threatens personally Identifiable Information (PII), and degrades national security. And while policies and budgets are increasingly focusing on cybersecurity, government officials must consider that:

  • Perimeter and network-based security approaches lack deeper context of appropriate data use
  • Defense-in-depth models go beyond access rights to moderate risk exposure 
  • Adversaries with adequate resources penetrate perimeter defenses and potentially access sensitive data
  • Risk to data crown jewels must be mitigated when navigating applications and systems

All cybersecurity programs must have a layered, defense-in-depth approach but there is no silver bullet, regardless of the number and types of security tools deployed. So, agencies must address risks to agency data at the source, in addition to deploying intrusion detection systems and intrusion protection tools, endpoint security, packet capture, network monitoring, SIEM and zero trust capabilities.

Essential Ingredient: Data Security and Privacy Governance Framework

Attacks on agencies require risk insights into threat vectors with intelligence to govern security and privacy. Establishing a data security and privacy governance framework early helps enable enterprises to implement their data privacy strategy by operationalizing security and privacy controls. This approach helps reduce data risk exposure using a reliable, repeatable methodology that scales across an organization, while remaining flexible for future security and privacy mandates.

Enterprises must be able to identify and classify sensitive information with the automation needed to gain context of location, use, ownership, and other insights to make intelligent decisions that help to minimize risk of data misuse or loss, as data is increasingly leveraged across more applications and users. If you agree with Aristotle’s timeless advice that “Knowing yourself is the beginning of all wisdom,” then in terms of data protection that wisdom is derived from the ability to:

  • Discover, protect, and monitor sensitive data to fuel data-driven digital transformations and support privacy and compliance efforts
  • Ensure visibility across all data platforms and types, highlighting the classification, location, and proliferation of data, providing the support needed for today’s complex, hybrid environments
  • Conduct continuous risk analysis of sensitive data, allowing organizations to prioritize resources and investments across functional, geographic, and line of business or mission views
  • Achieve AI-driven detection to uncover high risk and anomalous data usage
  • Automate the orchestration and protection of sensitive data with embedded intelligence to remediate privacy and security risks

3 Keys to Overcoming Common Data Security and Protection Pain Points

When planning and operationalizing a data-centric approach to security, government agency leaders face a plethora of challenges and conflicting demands on their resources that include:

A solutions-based approach can deliver relief from many of these pain points. Executives and practitioners should ask three key questions during their solutions planning process:

  • How do we build trust by ensuring sensitive data is handled appropriately?
  • How do we protect sensitive data while moving to the cloud… and then once we are there?
  • How do we better manage data risk to improve mission outcomes?

Three key steps to address these questions include:

  • Enabling Trusted Citizen Services: Ensure data trust by improving outcomes and creating value through governance, delivering data intelligence for analytics, and providing better citizen experiences through government services. Democratize data for government and citizen use while protecting sensitive information from unnecessary exposure, and operationalize data discovery and the analysis of sensitive and personal data for intelligent insights to prioritize data protection plans and orchestrate risk mitigation controls.
  • Protecting Data in the Cloud: Migrate to public multi-cloud platforms with protected data​ while prioritizing and operationalizing data protection in multi-cloud and hybrid environments. Monitor and assess data use across the multi-hybrid environment.
  • Improving Mission Outcomes: Help ensure security, compliance, and trust while automating security controls ​and monitoring access and use to counter fraud and insider threat. Remediate high-risk data proliferation, data rights, and misuse.

Close the Gap and Protect Your Crown Jewels

Jump-start your data protection and privacy program to discover data at risk, monitor and understand data proliferation, and orchestrate remediation. Accomplish your organizational goals by operationalizing automated sensitive data privacy and protection. Meet the need for a consistent, reliable approach as global, federal, and state data protection and privacy threats and mandates continue to evolve for reducing threat exposure.

Get more information from Informatica here: www.informatica.com/products/data-security.html

First Published: Oct 05, 2021