How to categorize cloud data in your organization?

Data classification is one of the most important steps toward creating an effective leak protection system. It is important from a business process point of view, as it allows you to organize where data is stored. This article will explain the common methods of data categorizing.

Data classification as an aspect of information security

Companies currently have vast amounts of data at their disposal, which can help companies gain valuable insights into their strengths and weaknesses. Organizing unstructured data is the first step to making the most of your data. Without a proper data classification system, it is difficult to keep track of sensitive information, which is critical regarding risk management, data protection, and compliance.

The first step in designing an information-analytical system for storing and analyzing data (for example, a corporate data warehouse) is to build a data model for organizing information in a future system. In any organization, in its information systems, there is data. However, often these data are fragmented, unrelated, and duplicated, and some data may be only on paper and cannot be accessed quickly for analytical analysis. 

So, how to classify existing data in the company? First, classification is understood as a systematic ordering of elements into groups or categories per given criteria. In this regard, knowing what business tasks the future analytical system will solve and what data will be used in this case, these data can be divided into a finite number of upper-level groups. Then, knowing the analytical needs of the business and, as a result, the requirements for the future analytical system, applying the data classification method, you can get a target, optimized data model, which will subsequently form the basis of the analytical data warehouse.

However, in practice, too few organizations carry out the classification. The reason for this is the difficulties accompanying the process: it is difficult to maintain relevance over time, and the classification process is complex and high cost. As a result, if organizations do carry out classification, they do it quite rarely, and the relevance of such information is questionable.

The benefits of data classification are as follows:

    • Optimal security is provided for each class of data, organized in terms of the potential threat level;
    • The method organizes data and information and improves productivity by making it easier for users to navigate and find the information they need in less time.
    • It removes duplicate, erroneous, or obsolete data, potentially reducing costs for storage (server management).

Virtual data room for cloud data categorizing

A virtual data room can be used as data classification and protection solution that helps organizations automatically and manually classify various information assets based on business requirements. Data classification automatically helps to identify sensitive data and then apply labels (labels) to determine how this data should be processed. In addition, the software visually represents which sites, folders and groups store confidential data and files with excessive access rights. Such an integrated approach provides additional protection for confidential information and significantly reduces false-positive responses.

To properly protect your data, you must remember that data is dynamic, and you need to update your data classification and data protection strategy regularly. Your database constantly changes as you move and delete files and add new information. Therefore, it is extremely important to evaluate your data classification appropriately to keep it up to date and to ensure that your data is adequately protected.

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