Integration an Emerging Challenge with Data-Loss Prevention Systems

Loraine Lawson

Integration work can be a real headache, but there's one definite plus to it: There's never a shortage of work.

The latest integration challenge involves data-loss prevention, or DLP, systems.

DLP technology is a relatively new security tool used to prevent accidental data security breaches or losses by monitoring data as it travels and at various endpoints.

Early adopters, particularly those who purchased point solutions, are encountering integration issues with these tools, according to InfoWorld. Primarily, these integration problems involve getting other DLP products to work together. DLP products can be divided into three types by their functions:

  1. Monitoring data on endpoint machines.
  2. Monitoring policy compliance at the network gateway
  3. Monitoring information kept inside data-storage systems, including e-mail and archiving systems.

This issue isn't likely to be resolved soon, given there were around 40 DLP vendors in October, according to this article.


For companies using DLP, the integration problems mean they can't enforce the same security policies across their systems. That's a big issue, since there's little point in stopping data from leaving the corporate gate by e-mail if it can instead be saved to a USB drive and e-mailed from home.


Some companies are already resorting to ripping out existing DLP solutions, according to the article.


Most likely, this problem won't affect you, since only 1,000 or so companies have invested in early DLP technologies. But it's still not a small problem. Early adopters were primarily global companies, including "financial services giants," according to one DLP executive.


If you haven't invested in DLP technology but are considering it, then your best bet is -- as with most integration challenges -- is to buy your products from a single vendor. The downside, of course, is this approach will most likely keep you from buying the best-of-breed point solutions.


For a more detailed look at this emerging software sector, I recommend you read this post and this one by fellow IT Business Edge blogger Carl Weinschenk.

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