Welcome!

Java IoT Authors: Elizabeth White, Yeshim Deniz, Zakia Bouachraoui, Liz McMillan, William Schmarzo

Related Topics: Java IoT, Containers Expo Blog, @CloudExpo, @DXWorldExpo

Java IoT: Blog Feed Post

A Guide to the CIO’s Toolbox By @Vormetric | @CloudExpo [#Cloud]

Data-at-rest is susceptible to many forces, not least of which are malicious and non-malicious insiders

By Alan Kessler

In my blog from September 2014, I wrote “encryption and access controls are your front-line defenses for defending data-at-rest. Given today’s threat environment, encrypt everything possible, everywhere possible.” While lots of things change in 6 months – the projected World Series Champion, the Super Bowl front-runner, Taylor Swift going from tweeting about dating to tweeting about hacking – this recommendation remains constant.

Data-at-rest is susceptible to many forces, not least of which are malicious and non-malicious insiders. As we noted in our recent 2015 Insider Threat Report, the insider threat landscape is becoming more difficult to deal with as the range of miscreant’s moves beyond employees and privileged IT staff. It now includes outsiders who have stolen valid user credentials; business partners, suppliers, and contractors with inappropriate access rights; and third-party service providers with excessive admin privileges. Unless properly controlled, all of these groups have the opportunity to reach inside corporate networks and steal unprotected data.

Tools in the box

Here are some stats from the report that may interest you:

  • Globally 89% of respondents felt that their organization was now more at risk from an insider attack; 34% felt very or extremely vulnerable
  • When asked who posed the biggest internal threat to corporate data, a massive 55% of respondents said privileged users; nine percentage points behind on 46% were contractors and service providers, and then business partners at 43%
  • In the U.S., 54% of respondents said preventing a data breach is the highest or second highest priority for IT security

Global Vulnerable

So, what’s a smart, savvy CIO to do? Since “run for the hills” isn’t the most realistic, proactive or laudable option, I thought it would be helpful to walk through the strategic components of data-at-rest security for the 21st century CIO’s toolbox. Let’s start with the first: encryption.

Encryption
Here at Vormetric, we offer an array of encryption solutions to help organizations safeguard data-at-rest, wherever it may lie. Determining which encryption solution is the best fit for your organization involves weighing a number of variables, such as:

  • What type of information do you want to protect?
  • What threats do you want to protect the information against?
  • What application and infrastructure changes can you tolerate?
  • What are your key management expectations?

Encryption2Regarding the key management question: when you implement encryption, it’s important to consider the encryption keys. Which employees have access to the decryption keys? Do they need access to those keys? Can your privileged users even see the keys or does the system you are using employ some other control mechanism to assign and serve the keys without allowing them to be created or visible to administrators and privileged users?

As an FYI, Vormetric solutions never expose the encryption keys. They are automatically created and stored under lock and key in our secure data security manager and then applied based on the policy in place for sensitive data.

This discussion ties nicely to our next topic, access control.

Access Policies2Access Control
Access control means limiting access to only those whose work requires it, and it typically goes hand-in-hand with encryption solutions.

An intelligent implementation will allow system and application maintenance and operations without exposing data to the privileged users who carry out these tasks. It also meets myriad compliance requirements and stops the threat of legal or physical compromise of the cloud environment. Even if someone walks away with the drive that has your data from the cloud provider, they won’t see a thing. And if you control your own keys, legal challenges in the cloud provider’s jurisdiction aren’t possible without your knowledge and cooperation.

Policy Management
Policy management refers to having a central method of control. Your organization will want a solution that enables straightforward policy management for access to sensitive data.

In most enterprises, roles are linked to definitions within the organization’s “directory services” implementation. Usually Microsoft Active Directory, but not always. These is where your domain credentials (password and login or other authentication methods like CAC cards for the military), groups of users (i.e. marketing, accounting, IT), business units and other structures are defined.

Having policy management tools means you can define for individual systems, for domain-based individual users, and for user roles or groups what, where, when and with what application protected data should be accessed. For example, an accounting group member might only be authorized to open a file through SharePoint between 1 and 4 p.m. on Tuesdays. The same type of restrictions can also be put in place for larger groups (such as privileged users, like system administrators.

TokenizationTokenization
Tokenization is the process of replacing sensitive data with unique identification symbols (a “token”) that acts as a proxy for the original information. The original data is kept in a master database that can be hardened, encrypted and keeps track of which token matches which original piece of data. The tokenization approach seeks to minimize the amount of sensitive data a business needs to keep on hand and typically is applied to a single field or column (e.g. credit card numbers, social security numbers).

Although tokenization solutions have been available for some time, our 2015 ITR found that most respondents still gravitate towards database and file encryption products. However, tokenization has valuable compliance-related uses. For example, tokenization helps organizations reduce the scope of audits required under compliance standards like PCI DSS.

Given the potential cost-savings and improvement in business efficiencies that come from tokenization, we highly recommend you consider a solution that offers tokenization capabilities.

Data MaskingData Masking
Data masking is pretty much exactly what it sounds like: it’s the process of hiding original data with random characters or data. Common reasons for employing data masking are to protect classified data, such as Social Security numbers, credit card numbers and financial information.

For example, when you view your credit card statement online, you often see only the last four digits of the credit card number. The first digits are obfuscated with a character pattern such as XXXX-XXXX-XXXX. This is data masking.

Tokenization and data masking often go hand-in-hand. When shopping around for a solution, we recommend honing in on products that offer the following components:

  • Streamlined application integration. Solutions employing tokenization at the application layer streamline development by eliminating the complexity required by building role- and identity-based access into every application
  • Granular, flexible controls. Administrators can establish policies to return an entire field tokenized or dynamically mask parts of a field by policy, without modifying databases. For example, allowing customer service teams to operate by only seeing a few digits of credit cards, or social security number
  • Non-intrusive implementation. Application changes are minimal or non-existent. Format- preserving tokenization capabilities preserve the original format of the data while shielding sensitive information from view without operational or performance impacts

Cloud and Big Data Protections
The words “cloud” and “big data” have been bandied around quite a bit in the past several years. While you may be tired of hearing them, it doesn’t change the fact that the protection of your cloud and big data technologies are hugely integral to a healthy IT security ecosystem.

Cloud Protection
In order to successfully leverage cloud resources while meeting cloud security and cloud compliance requirements, CIO’s should ask themselves the following questions:

  • Is it possible to meet my cloud security compliance requirements when using this cloud service?
  • How can my organization maintain control of our sensitive data within this cloud offering?
  • Will use of this cloud service increase my organization’s exposure to the soaring costs of data security breaches?
  • Will this cloud offering help to reduce my APT risk profile and prevent the high profile loss of protected intellectual property and customer information from such security threats?
  • Does the provider control who can see the data, even in a situation where a government agency uses a subpoena to force the cloud service provider to provide access to data?

To give you an even better idea of how to select appropriate cloud security solutions, we’ll point you to one of our favorite blogs, by Vormetric’s VP of Cloud, CJ Radford. As CJ notes, the key ingredients are relatively straight forward:

  • An extensible platform that provides data protection across multiple operating systems and data types (structured, unstructured) that can be managed through a single pane of glass
  • Encryption leveraging industry standard approved algorithms and centralized key management
  • Flexibility in deployment models – on-premise, off-premise, public, private or hybrid clouds – maximizing optionality for taking advantage of the cloud
  • Finally, the ability to restrict access to those personnel (and their IT applications) who only need access to the data – addressing the insider threat within your enterprise and cloud service provider

Big Data
There are a multiple variables that come into play when considering big data solutions, such as 1) data sources (data may come from enterprise resource planning systems, customer relationship management platforms, video files, spreadsheets, and social media feeds); 2) big data frameworks (massive amounts of sensitive data may be managed at any given time and can come in the form of system logs, configuration files, error logs, etc.); and 3) analytics (the most sensitive asset of all, because it makes sense of all the information).

While there are a number of disparate encryption solutions that address big data, most of them only address certain components of big data. Our recommendation is to avoid point approaches, and identify a solution that offers strong controls and comprehensive coverage. To give you an idea of what this solution might look like, please see our illustration below.

Platform Diagram

That’s All (For Now)
Although this overview isn’t exhaustive, we believe it gives the average enterprise CIO a good starting point. The key to successfully protecting your data-at-rest is being smart, informed and aware of the threats around you. Since 2015 has just started, you have months to make the changes necessary – and avoid being on the wrong side of the data when we issue our 2016 Insider Threat Report.

The post A GUIDE TO THE CIO’S TOOLBOX appeared first on Data Security Blog | Vormetric.

Read the original blog entry...

More Stories By Vormetric Blog

Vormetric (@Vormetric) is the industry leader in data security solutions that span physical, big data and cloud environments. Data is the new currency and Vormetric helps over 1400 customers, including 17 of the Fortune 30 and many of the world’s most security conscious government organizations, to meet compliance requirements and protect what matters — their sensitive data — from both internal and external threats. The company’s scalable Vormetric Data Security Platform protects any file, any database and any application’s data —anywhere it resides — with a high performance, market-leading data security platform that incorporates application transparent encryption, privileged user access controls, automation and security intelligence.

IoT & Smart Cities Stories
In his general session at 19th Cloud Expo, Manish Dixit, VP of Product and Engineering at Dice, discussed how Dice leverages data insights and tools to help both tech professionals and recruiters better understand how skills relate to each other and which skills are in high demand using interactive visualizations and salary indicator tools to maximize earning potential. Manish Dixit is VP of Product and Engineering at Dice. As the leader of the Product, Engineering and Data Sciences team at D...
Dynatrace is an application performance management software company with products for the information technology departments and digital business owners of medium and large businesses. Building the Future of Monitoring with Artificial Intelligence. Today we can collect lots and lots of performance data. We build beautiful dashboards and even have fancy query languages to access and transform the data. Still performance data is a secret language only a couple of people understand. The more busine...
Bill Schmarzo, author of "Big Data: Understanding How Data Powers Big Business" and "Big Data MBA: Driving Business Strategies with Data Science," is responsible for setting the strategy and defining the Big Data service offerings and capabilities for EMC Global Services Big Data Practice. As the CTO for the Big Data Practice, he is responsible for working with organizations to help them identify where and how to start their big data journeys. He's written several white papers, is an avid blogge...
Nicolas Fierro is CEO of MIMIR Blockchain Solutions. He is a programmer, technologist, and operations dev who has worked with Ethereum and blockchain since 2014. His knowledge in blockchain dates to when he performed dev ops services to the Ethereum Foundation as one the privileged few developers to work with the original core team in Switzerland.
René Bostic is the Technical VP of the IBM Cloud Unit in North America. Enjoying her career with IBM during the modern millennial technological era, she is an expert in cloud computing, DevOps and emerging cloud technologies such as Blockchain. Her strengths and core competencies include a proven record of accomplishments in consensus building at all levels to assess, plan, and implement enterprise and cloud computing solutions. René is a member of the Society of Women Engineers (SWE) and a m...
Andrew Keys is Co-Founder of ConsenSys Enterprise. He comes to ConsenSys Enterprise with capital markets, technology and entrepreneurial experience. Previously, he worked for UBS investment bank in equities analysis. Later, he was responsible for the creation and distribution of life settlement products to hedge funds and investment banks. After, he co-founded a revenue cycle management company where he learned about Bitcoin and eventually Ethereal. Andrew's role at ConsenSys Enterprise is a mul...
Whenever a new technology hits the high points of hype, everyone starts talking about it like it will solve all their business problems. Blockchain is one of those technologies. According to Gartner's latest report on the hype cycle of emerging technologies, blockchain has just passed the peak of their hype cycle curve. If you read the news articles about it, one would think it has taken over the technology world. No disruptive technology is without its challenges and potential impediments t...
If a machine can invent, does this mean the end of the patent system as we know it? The patent system, both in the US and Europe, allows companies to protect their inventions and helps foster innovation. However, Artificial Intelligence (AI) could be set to disrupt the patent system as we know it. This talk will examine how AI may change the patent landscape in the years to come. Furthermore, ways in which companies can best protect their AI related inventions will be examined from both a US and...
Bill Schmarzo, Tech Chair of "Big Data | Analytics" of upcoming CloudEXPO | DXWorldEXPO New York (November 12-13, 2018, New York City) today announced the outline and schedule of the track. "The track has been designed in experience/degree order," said Schmarzo. "So, that folks who attend the entire track can leave the conference with some of the skills necessary to get their work done when they get back to their offices. It actually ties back to some work that I'm doing at the University of San...
When talking IoT we often focus on the devices, the sensors, the hardware itself. The new smart appliances, the new smart or self-driving cars (which are amalgamations of many ‘things'). When we are looking at the world of IoT, we should take a step back, look at the big picture. What value are these devices providing. IoT is not about the devices, its about the data consumed and generated. The devices are tools, mechanisms, conduits. This paper discusses the considerations when dealing with the...