Thales Blog

Securing Data In The Digital Transformation Era

January 31, 2018

Data breaches are the new normal. According to our 2018 Global Data Threat Report, 67% of enterprises have been breached, with that percentage rate growing every year. Regardless of the security measures and efforts put in place, organizations need to act as if a successful cyberattack is not a question of “if” but “when.”

Securing Data in the Digital Transformation Era

As organizations continue to embrace digital transformation, greater amounts of sensitive data is created, stored and transferred in digital form putting more data at risk. Also with the increase in cloud, mobile, and IoT devices, a whole new generation of attack surfaces are vulnerable to hackers. Just a few years ago the network perimeter were the four walls surrounding the corporate enterprise, with the emergence of these transformative technologies the perimeter has become dynamic and ever changing.

Today, the vast majority of enterprises (94%) are using sensitive data in cloud, big data, IoT or mobile environments. Data is being stored in multiple of locations, and while protecting the perimeter is still important, it simply is not enough to prevent sensitive data from being stolen. Enterprises are shifting their focus from the perimeter to securing the actual data itself, no matter where it resides.

The biggest driver of digital transformation is cloud computing. Widespread enterprise adoption is demonstrated by Amazon’s recent announcement of 42% revenue growth in the third quarter for its AWS division. Thales Data Threat Report found that the top motivations for IT security spending included cloud migration at (39%) which tied with the desire to avoid data breach penalties (39%) and was closely followed by compliance (37%). As organizations move to the cloud, it is critical that they consider new security measures to protect their data.

Our report also found that most firms are pursuing multi-cloud strategies, with 84% choosing more than one IaaS vendor and 34% using more than 50 SaaS applications. One of the top security concerns given the proliferation of cloud usage is the lack of control over the location of data (62%). While cloud providers are increasingly providing security features, organizations are still responsible for protecting their data.

Encryption has now become the leading solution for protecting sensitive data. Even in the case of a data breach, if the data is encrypted it cannot be exploited unless decrypted with the appropriate key. One of the challenges facing organizations when moving to the cloud is the protection, storage and control over the encryption keys. It is considered a best practice to separate your encryption keys from the data. As organizations move their data to the cloud, they may maintain control of their keys by separating the control of those keys from the cloud provider. For some compliance issues this can be a requirement.

Protecting data in a multi-cloud environment can be especially difficult for organizations seeking compliance because they need to prove they are in control of their data. With the introduction of new compliance regulations such as the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), the penalties for non-compliance are much more severe than in the past. By considering increased use of encryption, especially for cloud and other advanced technologies, enterprises will not only address the more serious compliance requirements, but also move toward widely recognized industry best practices. To do this, organizations should seek solutions that enable them to manage encryption keys and access data securely while working across multiple clouds.

Thales offers multi-cloud advanced encryption and multi-cloud key management solutions to help enterprises securely manage their digital transformation and remain in full control of their data. These solutions delivered through the SaaS model provide assurance that sensitive data stored in the cloud is fully protected and under their control.

By partnering with industry-leading IaaS, PaaS and SaaS providers worldwide, Thales is able to support any multi-cloud strategy – public, private or hybrid.

With the volume of data breaches likely to continue along its current trajectory and the increase of sensitive data being stored in the cloud, organizations need a comprehensive data security strategy. They must know their data is protected wherever it is created, shared or stored. Thales provides a comprehensive portfolio of solutions that enable organizations to fully embrace the digital transformation era with confidence.