Security 500 conference     

 Don’t miss the networking event of the year for security executives!
Register today for the Security 500 Conference.

Case Studies (Cyber)

How Encryption Enables Crucial Data Control

On January 1, 2014, California implemented an amendment to its breach notification law.

On January 1, 2014, California implemented an amendment to its breach notification law. The law applies to companies doing business in California that experience a security breach exposing personal information. Under the amendment, “personal information” has been expanded beyond financial and medical information to include online account credentials such as user names and email addresses when lost in combination with passwords and security questions and answers. However, the law includes a safe harbor clause that negates company liability if the personal information is encrypted.

It is almost impossible for businesses to guard completely against data leakage, whether it’s an external hack, lawful interception, or human error. Faced with this reality, the only option for businesses is to use encryption to insulate against the impact of a data breach and avoid penalties. However, enterprise leaders need to remember that encryption is never a “one size fits all” technology, and for many it raises concerns over complexity and performance. There is a big difference between deploying encryption in laptops versus networks, storage systems, databases or applications.

When we think about encryption, most people focus on the encryption algorithm, the process of “scrambling” the data to make it unreadable, but that’s only half the story. Control and management of the keys to unlock and create meaning from the encrypted information is just as crucial, and from an organizational point of view probably more complex and error-prone. The encryption algorithms might be the same for a wide variety of use cases, but the key management activities almost certainly won’t be.

Of course, technology can rarely neutralize the reputational impact associated with a data breach, though in this case encryption does allow organizations to retain crucial control of their data.  Recent high-profile attacks should serve as a powerful reminder that no systems are safe. Businesses need to invest time in understanding what their data is worth – encrypt what you care about and keep control of your data. 

Did you enjoy this article? Click here to subscribe to Security Magazine. 

You must login or register in order to post a comment.

Multimedia

Videos

Image Galleries

ASIS 2013 Product Preview

ASIS International 59th Annual Seminar and Exhibits, September 24-27 in Chicago, Illinois, will include an exhibit hall packed with innovative security solutions. Here are some of the products that will be shown at ASIS this year.

Podcasts

Virtualization and Data Center Security: What You Need to Know for 2014

Data centers are increasingly becoming the center of the enterprise, and data center and cyber security is following the same path for security departments. According to Justin Flynn, a consultant at the Burwood Group, the virtualization of data centers allows enterprises to scale more easily and faster, with a smaller footprint.

However, hosting enterprise data in the cloud can make intrusion detection more difficult – how can enterprise security leaders team up with other departments to keep aware of cyber risks and traffic, and physical and data compliance during the virtual transition? How can CISOs and CSOs discuss cyber threats with the C-Suite to get the resources they need? And how can the proper infrastructure test and verify possible malicious attacks? 

More Podcasts

Security Magazine

Security Magazine 2014 September cover

2014 October

Security takes a look at safety and preparedness for the harshest of weather phenomena in this October 2014 edition of the magazine. Also, we investigate supply chain security and the many benefits of PSIM. 

Table Of Contents Subscribe

Travel & the Ebola Risk

Are you and your enterprise restricting travel due to Ebola risks?
View Results Poll Archive

THE SECURITY STORE

comptiahighriseproductphoto
CompTIA Security+ Certification Study Guide
CompTIA's Security+ certification is a globally-recognized, vendor neutral exam that has helped over 60,000 IT professionals reach further and higher in their careers. The current Security+ exam (SY0-201) focuses more on being able to deal with security issues rather than just identifying them.
More Products

Clear Seas Research

Clear Seas ResearchWith access to over one million professionals and more than 60 industry-specific publications,Clear Seas Research offers relevant insights from those who know your industry best. Let us customize a market research solution that exceeds your marketing goals.

STAY CONNECTED

Facebook 40px 2-12-13 Twitter logo 40px 2-12-13  YouTube  LinkedIn logo 40px 2-12-13Google+

Vertical Sector Focus: Critical Infrastructures

criticalhomepagethumbFrom terrorism to vandalism, it’s preparedness, response, training and partnerships. Learn about some of the critical security issues facing this sector.

Visit the Critical Infrastructure page to read more.