The link between Data Loss Prevention (DLP) and GDPR compliance


Mar 15, 2019

Mar 15, 2019


Humanity entrance into the Fourth Industrial Revolution has made exponential changes to how people relate with one another and with their technology. Data is easily uploaded and shared to other gadgets through high-speed Internet and Cloud storage. The increased use of these and other supply chain networks has also made files easier to access and harder to protect.

This is not to say that Cloud has been the cause of recent data breaches. Though Kroll released a report that data breaches have increased by 75%, most of these incidents were caused by human error and only about 102 incidents caused by intentional cyberattacks. With the recent implementation of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), data security is stricter within businesses. This mandates the reporting of breaches, accidental or not, and encourages a more tech-savvy method in dealing with unforeseen data leaks and cyberattacks. As an upgrade for most companies, its time to use Data Loss Prevention (DLP).

What is DLP?

Data Loss Prevention (DLP) is both a set of tools and solutions that recognizes important information, traces it as it moves from server to server, and ensures that it is safe from misuse or theft. Data Loss Prevention can be discussed in two parts: the software or tool and the solutions.

The DLP software keeps confidential and critical data classified and keeps track of any data policies governing the company. If there is a violation in the rules or a breach in the system, DLP solutions will tackle any data loss, data recovery, or data leakage problem.

How does DLP help GDPR?

  • GDPRs Main Principles

The European Union implementation of their data protection regulation was mandated last May 2018 for all companies based in or has operations in Europe. Within the GDPR, there are six listed principles that encompass the 88-page long text.

  • Lawfulness, fairness, and transparency: This principle mandates that all of the customers? personal data will be processed according to the criteria set by the GDPR. Everything that will be done to the users data will be made known to the user, as well.
  • Purpose limitations: The customer personal data will be collected and processed according to whatever is stated in the company privacy policy on data usage.
  • Data minimization: When collecting data, the company is to collect what they need? no more, no less.
  • Accuracy: All the personal information stated in the company database should be accurate and regularly updated.
  • Storage limitation: If the data collected is no longer of use to the company or the company goals, then this data will be removed. This also entails that the company conducts a regular check-up of their database for outdated or unusable information.
  • Integrity and confidentiality: There should be limited access to confidential information. The EU requires companies to build the necessary processes to prevent any breaches or leaks.

Being compliant to a data security regulation can be both expensive and taxing on especially big corporations that handle lots of information. How then are they going to succeed?

  • How DLP Supports these Principles

Data Loss Prevention strategies protect digital corporate and customer data in its three states: Data In Use (DIU), Data In Motion (DIM), and Data At Rest (DAR).

  • Data In Use (DIU) DLP Solutions

DIU refers to any data that is actively stored or processed by the computer. This type of data is hard to encrypt or protect as it affects the data performance as it is being processed. Because of this, DLP solutions monitor the computer activity once it takes a certain document and sends it via email or processes it for printing. Once an event takes place, these solutions can be automatically blocked or monitored based on the type of activity.

Data In Motion (DIM) DLP Solutions

When sensitive data is being sent out of the company parameters, DLP solutions that are set within the company network will be able to detect and investigate these. Whether they may be instant messages, email, social media posts, these solutions check if the sharing of these information violates any non-disclosure agreements.

Data At Rest (DAR)

If DIU is data that is being processed, DAR is confidential data stored in the company server or database. DLP solutions for these types of information focus on protecting files that are at risk of being exposed or need further securing. Once identified that these files are at risk of accidental exposure, DLP has content-aware tools that enforce company privacy policies and classify important information.

DLP software and solutions are automated, providing real-time protection and monitoring processes for the company network. The entry, departure, and management of data will all be happening from the IT is office and will not be handled by a local administrator. It not only allows the company to be GDPR-compliant but also gives them the opportunity to improve their technological prowess without compromising their security to third-parties. Data Loss Prevention can keep companies at the top of their game.

Talk to us.

Wilson Consulting Group is an innovative global cybersecurity consulting firm that offers Compliance Services. If you are interested in staying GDPR-compliant, give us a call.

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