Data loss prevention (DLP) solutions are essential to protect the sensitive information of an organization and its customers. DLP solutions are designed to monitor data flows to ensure that sensitive data does not inappropriately leave an organization’s network and systems.

As companies increasingly make the move to the cloud, a growing percentage of corporate data is stored on cloud-based infrastructure. Cloud DLP solutions provide the benefits of DLP for an organization’s cloud-hosted data

The Need for Cloud DLP

Most organizations use the cloud in some way. This may include anything from full-scale cloud-based data and application hosting to the use of cloud-based Software as a Service (SaaS) solutions such as webmail (Microsoft 365, G Suite, etc.), corporate collaboration apps (Slack, Trello, Jira, etc.), or video conferencing services (Zoom, Google Meet, etc.).

In all of these cases, an organization is allowing potentially sensitive information to be processed and stored on cloud-based servers. Cloud Data Loss Prevention solutions are necessary to ensure that sensitive data is not accidentally being leaked via these cloud-based services.

The potential for Shadow IT means that organizations face the risk of data leaks via cloud-based infrastructure and services that it knows nothing about. Employees, contractors, or threat actors with access to an organization’s systems may use a personal or unapproved cloud-based service, which creates the potential for the leakage or exfiltration of sensitive data as well. Cloud DLP solutions can help an organization to identify and block flows of sensitive and valuable data to these unapproved cloud services.

How Cloud DLP Works

Cloud DLP solutions are designed to identify and block potential exposure of sensitive data via cloud-based data storage and applications. However, the potential for Shadow IT and unauthorized or unknown cloud-based solutions means that cloud DLP solutions cannot solely monitor an organization’s official cloud footprint.

Instead, cloud DLP solutions monitor network traffic to cloud environments, using SSL inspection to look for sensitive data inside TLS-encrypted traffic. Using a library of predefined or custom data types, a cloud DLP can identify potential leakage of credit card numbers, customer data, intellectual property, and other potentially sensitive and valuable data.

If potential data leakage is detected, a cloud DLP solution could block the traffic entirely or simply prevent the leakage. For example, sensitive information within an email could be censored or an attachment containing sensitive data could be removed from an email.

Benefits of Cloud DLP

Cloud DLP enables an organization to prevent data leakage via cloud-based data storage or applications. Some of the benefits that cloud Data Loss Prevention provides include the following:

  • Data Security: Preventing the exfiltration and leakage of sensitive data is the core focus of DLP solutions. Deploying Cloud DLP helps an organization to improve the security of its sensitive data by extending DLP capabilities to cloud-based data storage and SaaS applications.
  • Cloud Data Visibility: Cloud DLP solutions identify flows of corporate data into both authorized and unauthorized cloud-based solutions. This visibility into cloud data flows provides both essential security insights and a better understanding of how an organization’s data, applications, and cloud-based infrastructure are used.
  • Regulatory Compliance: Many of the types of data that Data Loss Prevention solutions are designed to identify and secure are also protected by data privacy laws such as PCI DSS, HIPAA, and GDPR. Managing access to this data, both on-prem and in the cloud, is a core part of an organization’s regulatory compliance responsibilities.

Cloud DLP with Avanan/Check Point

Data protection is essential to an organization’s cybersecurity, customer experience, and competitive advantage. Theft, leakage, or accidental disclosure of sensitive data could result in the loss of intellectual property, customer churn, and legal and regulatory compliance penalties. As companies move to a zero trust security model, visibility into and protection of data moving between on-prem and cloud-based data storage and applications is essential.

Check Point offers comprehensive, configurable, multi-layer DLP throughout an organization’s environment.

With DLP, organizations create policies based on Check Point’s library of predefined data types and custom data types. Check Point solutions identify potential data leakage via email, corporate collaboration applications, and other media. If sensitive data is identified within a message, the content is blocked and an alert is sent to the corporate security team.

Data security and cloud Data Loss Prevention are essential security capabilities for any organization. Or find out how to prevent data loss via email and other corporate collaboration solutions with Check Point Harmony Email and Collaboration Suite.