Slicing Personalization from Packets

Michael Vizard

Although most privacy advocates have not got down to the network layer yet, they do suspect that networking monitoring tools are capturing a fair amount of personal information about end users.

To avoid getting caught up in thorny issues over privacy, many network monitoring tools try to slice that information away from the packet. But some tools do this better than others. Instead of relying on the quality of various network monitoring tools to slice personal information away from the packet, VSS Monitoring CEO Terrence Breslin is advocating that these tools adopt a new vSlice approach to this task.

vSlice uses a more granular approach that provides a uniform, and more efficient, way of slicing packets. Rather than performing that task at the tool level, VSS Monitoring says it makes more sense to slice the packets before passing those packets on to various tools.

It's not clear how many network monitoring tool vendors are going to sign up for this approach. But between the issue of being more efficient and the need to keep compliance auditors out of network operations as much as possible, Breslin has a point.

After all, while it's true that auditing tends to add a lot of overhead to the business of running IT, you can never be too careful with data in transit, especially when we don't really always have the time to check out not only the quality of the monitoring tools being used, but also the intentions of the people using them.

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