Big Data Can Benefit Information Security: ISF

Businesses increasingly trust data analytics to help with everything from marketing strategy to supply chains. But as the Information Security Forum (ISF) points out in a new report, there’s another area where crunching massive volumes of data can prove useful to organizational survival: security.

The ISF found that “only half” of the organizations it surveyed for the report deployed an analytics package with the purpose of analyzing data and network traffic for evidence of fraud or other crimes.

“Few organizations currently recognize the benefits for information security, yet many are already using data analytics to support their core business,” Michael de Crespigny, CEO of ISF, wrote in a statement tied to the report’s release. “With the speed and complexity of the threat landscape constantly evolving and the prevalence of combined threats, organizations need to start moving away from being retrospective and reactive to being proactive and preventative.”

The sheer amount of data flooding organizations—the ISF estimates “data volumes” growing at a healthy rate of 2.5 million terabytes per day—also presents a significant challenge to successful analysis.

Indeed, a number of companies are developing tools designed to help with that analysis. IBM’s Analytical Decision Management platform, for example, can speed insurance companies’ fraud detection and claims settlements—among its other touted functions. That platform combines three products leveraging predictive analytics, including IBM SPSS Decision Management, IBM SPSS Modeler, and IBM SPSS Collaboration and Deployment Services.

Other security tools include dbProtect, created by Application Security Inc., which lets organizations ferret out sensitive data within massive databases on a corporate network—a necessary first step to actually protecting said data. And then there are a variety of services for actually guarding databases filled with precious information, both on-premises and in the cloud.

In addition to analyzing massive amounts of data to detect irregularities, companies can protect assets via a variety of other tools ranging from encryption to log management. Particularly as more and more companies migrate to the cloud, the potential options (and potential pitfalls) are more complex than ever. SlashCloud offers some good resources on security in cloud environments.


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