Data like water

is data like water?

Data like water is an interesting analogy, It was only during one of my vacations that along a beach, i realized how the two are really similar and especially in the world of technology how data flow is akin to water flow. This paper tries to establish similarities, one's ability to capture and track source. Further how identities are critical and how data can be tagged to various users. Also it is critical to examine the storage and linkages to the identities under which data is stored. 


how important is data

data shape is fluid

Data, the most important element in the 21st century is generated in different forms and formats within various organizations. The size and shape of data is very similar to “Water”, it is constantly changing size and shape as it moves from one desk to another and one corporation to another.  
While the analogy may be slightly out of context in the real world, but this analogy finds a perfect fit when it comes to securing Data. The question one needs to ask, is it even possible to capture, understand, track the source of a constantly evolving matter such as DATA.

like human bodies are made of water, organizations are made of data

It is said that 99% of human body is made of water. The importance of water can never be debated. If one were to take this analogy and extend it to Data, it cannot be debated that data is the single most important element for any organization such that its survival is dependent on this single element. Let us take a deep dive and understand what are the types of data in any organization? 
The following can be a brief description of types of data within an organization Viz: Financial, Sales Lead, Payroll, Employee, Customer Information, projects, contract bids etc this list could continue. If one reviews any organization closely it would not be surprise that every piece of information captured, processed and output stored or distributed would be critical data. Any breach of such data intentionally or unintentionally could lead to disaster including lock down of business.  One is surprised how this is currently treated in any organization.

data deserves the due attention!

Data i guess is critical, established beyond doubt. However in this complex business environment as well as the multiple interfaces makes it absolutely difficult to track, monitor and protect the source, data at rest or data in motion.
It is also important to note that Data is generally perceived to be information generated by electronic systems, but that is not true, all information generated including on hard copies i.e paper is Data. 
Organizations spend millions protecting devices and  technology, however in the coming years security will be DATA centric.

protecting data

identities are important

There are several  solutions which now protect databases viz; database firewall, data access management solutions etc. There are several approaches one can follow, however one of the most important approach is to ensure that identities are mapped to all that is generated or stored and these identities are adequately tracked and monitored.
It is important to establish the source where data is generated, modified or is used. Identities play a very important role as they are the identifiers or touch points in any organization. To protect data, it is imperative to create an arc over the identities such that they are identified, controlled and monitored. It is at this stage imperative to map every identity and the biggest hole in identity management is the how privilege identities are managed. Privilege identities are ones that have the unfettered access to all data and could cause the most damage if compromised. 
Privilege Identity Management is an area which is still underinvested by corporations across the world and FAITH is still the best control.