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What Are The Essentials of Data Leakage Protection

  • 29 Apr 2024
  • 3 min read

What Are The Essentials of Data Leakage Protection - Feature image

CISOs and CTOs worldwide now believe data is the new currency, and therefore safeguarding it has become a mission-critical priority for them. Enter Data Leakage Protection (DLP) – the security framework that stands between your sensitive information and potential threats. 

This blog discusses the essentials of DLP to understand its significance, functionality, and best practices.

What is Data Leakage Protection (DLP)?

Data Loss Prevention (DLP) is all about preventing data breaches and leaks. It is a framework that ensures sensitive information doesn't get leaked out unnoticed. Whether it's preventing hackers from stealing your data or making sure employees don't accidentally send it to the wrong person, DLP is your frontline defense.

Types of Data Leakage

Data leaks can occur through various channels, including:

  • Accidental Data Leakage: Unintentional sharing of sensitive information through emails, file transfers, or removable storage devices.
  • Intentional Data Leakage: Deliberate disclosure of confidential data by insiders for personal gain or malicious purposes.
  • External Threats: Attacks from external entities such as hackers or cybercriminals targeting vulnerabilities in systems or networks.
  • Third-party Mishandling: Data breaches resulting from the mishandling of information by third-party vendors or service providers.

How does DLP work?

DLP keeps a watchful eye on your organization's data flow. It's equivalent to having a digital security guard scanning emails, files, and other digital traffic for any signs of sensitive information. 

When it spots something suspicious, like a credit card number being sent in an email attachment, it steps in to take action. This could mean blocking the transmission, encrypting the data, or flagging it for further review by security experts. 

Essentially, DLP is your proactive defense against data breaches and leaks, ensuring your sensitive information stays safe and secure.

Why is DLP Important?

The importance of DLP cannot be overstated, especially considering the escalating threat landscape and regulatory compliance requirements. Some key reasons include:

  • Protecting Confidentiality: Safeguarding sensitive data from unauthorized access or disclosure.
  • Maintaining Compliance: Ensuring compliance with data protection regulations and industry standards.
  • Preserving Reputation: Mitigating the risk of reputational damage and financial loss associated with data breaches.
  • Fostering Trust: Building trust and confidence among customers, partners, and stakeholders by demonstrating a commitment to data security.

Data Leak Key Insights:

  • This year, there has been a 28% increase in insider-driven data exposure, loss, leak, and theft events compared to 2021.
  • The average cost of a data breach reached USD $4.45 million in 2023.
  • 85% of cybersecurity leaders expect data loss from insider events to increase by 2025.
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Benefits & Best Practices of DLP Solutions

  • Preventing Data Leakage: Proactively identifying and preventing data breaches and leaks before they occur.
  • Comprehensive Coverage: Protecting sensitive data across endpoints, networks, and cloud environments.
  • Regulatory Compliance: Ensuring compliance with data protection regulations such as GDPR, HIPAA, and PCI DSS.
  • User Awareness and Training: Educating employees about data security best practices and promoting a culture of vigilance.
  • Regular Audits and Assessments: Conducting regular audits and assessments to evaluate the effectiveness of DLP controls and policies.
  • Continuous Improvement: Evolving DLP strategies and technologies to address emerging threats and vulnerabilities.

Components of a Data Loss Solution

Data Loss Solution is the process of implementing regular backups of important data to prevent loss in case of unforeseen events. Components of a Data Loss Solution encompass various measures to ensure comprehensive protection of sensitive information:

Securing Data in Motion: This involves deploying technology at the network edge to scrutinize traffic patterns. By analyzing data in transit, it can detect any unauthorized transmission of sensitive data that it detects as a threat. .

Securing Endpoints: Utilizing endpoint-based agents enables control over information exchanges among users, user groups, and external entities. These agents can actively block risky communications in real-time while providing users with immediate feedback.

Securing Data at Rest: Implementing access control mechanisms, encryption techniques, and data retention policies safeguards archived organizational data from unauthorized access or disclosure.

Securing Data in Use: Certain DLP systems possess capabilities to monitor and flag unauthorized activities performed by users during their interactions with data. This helps in identifying and addressing potential security breaches quickly.

Data Identification: Accurately determining which data requires protection is essential. This can be achieved either through manual classification using predefined rules and metadata, or through automated methods such as machine learning algorithms.

Data Leak Detection: DLP solutions, along with complementary security systems like Intrusion Detection Systems (IDS), Intrusion Prevention Systems (IPS), and Security Information and Event Management (SIEM) tools, play a role in identifying suspicious data transfers. 

They promptly alert security personnel about potential data leakage incidents, allowing for timely intervention.

Data Loss Prevention vs Data Leak Prevention


Data Loss Prevention (DLP)

Data Leak Prevention (DLP)

Stops unauthorized data sharing within and outside the organization.

Catches accidental or deliberate data leaks, no matter where they're headed.

Uses checks and controls to enforce data security rules.

Watches for anything fishy happening in real-time to prevent leaks.

Keeps sensitive data safe from prying eyes and hands.

Acts fast to stop leaks, protecting your organization from harm.

How Can You Ensure Your Organization’s Data Leakage Protection?

To keep your organization's data safe from leaks, consider solutions like PureDome. It keeps an eye out for any alarming activity that might lead to a leak, while its ZTNA tightens security by double-checking user identities before granting access, even if it's from a remote or cloud-based location. By using these tools alongside solid security practices and making sure your team is up to speed, you can lock down your data tight.

Frequently Asked Questions
What is Data Leakage Protection (DLP)?

DLP is a security strategy to prevent unauthorized disclosure of sensitive data.

How does DLP work?

DLP monitors data flow, detects sensitive information, and takes action to prevent leaks or breaches.

Why is DLP important for organizations?

DLP helps protect data integrity, ensures compliance with regulations, and minimizes the risk of reputational and financial damage from breaches.