Securiti AI Recognized as a Customers’ Choice For DSPM By Gartner Peer Insights


The Top 5 Advantages of DSPM For Data Security

Published June 25, 2024

How well does an organization know its data? Notably, organizations’ understanding of their data is more superficial than expected.


Data has far outgrown its traditional boundaries, spreading to multi-cloud environments and across various cloud storages and data lakes. The current, voluminous data landscape brings with it a flood of complexities and risks.

For instance, forty to ninety percent of a company’s data is dark data, i.e., not known and accessible to IT. Most part of this data is stored in the cloud and may contain sensitive information. Leaving such data unprotected could expose the entire organization to various data security risks. In fact, IBM’s Cost of Data Breach Report 2023 cited that 82% of data breaches involve cloud data.

Traditionally, organizations leverage Cloud Security Posture Management (CSPM) and SaaS Security Posture Management (SSPM) tools to strengthen their cybersecurity. While these tools play a critical role in protecting an organization's cyber defense, i.e., infrastructure, they often fall short in safeguarding data as they lack critical data context, resulting in data breaches.

Modern data security challenges demand a progressive approach to fixing cloud security gaps. Enter Data Security Posture Management (DSPM), a data-centric solution that provides comprehensive visibility of where sensitive data is, who has access to it, how it is used, and what its security posture is.

DSPM solutions provide a number of benefits to organizations.

DSPM Benefit #1 Improve Data Visibility & Prevent Sensitive Data Exposure

Globally, organizations consider data a valuable or critical component of success. Hence, the significant rise in data-driven decisions has led to its abnormal growth. While organizations tend to amass volumes of data around the year, not all that data is valuable. This results in the creation of dark data—which is data that organizations store yet do not utilize.

Organizations are also burdened with unstructured data. Due to a number of challenges, unstructured data is inherently more difficult to manage, govern, and secure. For instance, the lack of appropriate or high-quality tools makes it challenging for organizations to govern large volumes of unstructured data or control access to it.

DSPM evolves an organization’s ability to discover all its dark effectively across public clouds. The solution leverages a powerful discovery engine to find all data systems, including shadow and native data assets, along with all the data. It then classifies the data in those systems to label which contain sensitive data.DSPM solutions further identify misconfigurations on systems containing sensitive data that may lead to sensitive data exposure so security teams may remediate the misconfigurations and enforce proper safeguards, such as encryption.

DSPM Benefit #2 Reduce ROT Data (Redundant, Obsolete, and Trivial Data)

Amassing a high volume of data without proper policies and controls can often result in redundant, obsolete, and trivial (ROT) data. Copies of data exist across an organization’s environment, such as in databases across different clouds. It may be a part of a dataset that has served its actual purpose yet has not been deleted or removed. Or it may also be some unnecessary files, such as photos or videos, that have no business relevance. Sometimes, organizations end up storing data for years due to retention requirements. All such unwanted data that could safely be removed costs organizations $34 million.

Even if cost is not the issue for some businesses, ROT data may still pose serious security and compliance risks. More importantly, when organizations start storing volumes of data aimlessly, it makes it challenging for security and data teams to protect data at scale or leverage it efficiently.

DSPM solutions can assist organizations in minimizing ROT data to reduce the attack surface. DSPM discovers all the data assets to identify duplicate (redundant) data. With high-precision classification and regulatory intelligence, the solution can help organizations detect obsolete or trivial data, files that haven’t been accessed for a while, or that have passed the retention period. DSPMs can further identify if any data sets contain sensitive information. All the duplicate, obsolete, or trivial data can be reviewed on priority. If not needed, this data can be quarantined to help organizations reduce the attack surface.

DSPM Benefit #3 Meet Privacy Compliance

A business may be subject to multiple data protection laws and compliance standards at one time. With the rise in AI regulatory laws, the compliance landscape has grown even more complex.

Ensuring compliance with various regulatory and compliance requirements can be challenging when organizations don’t have a clearer view of their data landscape. Not only is the data disbursed across different clouds, SaaS, and other environments, but it is also subject to various overlapping and conflicting requirements. For instance, what is categorized as sensitive data in one regulation may be treated as personal data in another standard, thus requiring separate policies or controls. Similarly, data retention laws also vary from organization to organization depending on the type of data collected, the industry an organization operates in, or if they collect credit card information. Notably, it is also difficult to track data transactions across international boundaries while monitoring regional retention requirements.

Amongst the many benefits, DSPM solutions also help map data to various regulatory and compliance standards automatically. The solution can help appropriately classify, tag, and label data that falls under different laws or standards, such as HIPAA, PCI DSS, etc. Businesses can further run various compliance assessments against data systems and data. These tests enable businesses to get a complete view of gaps in their compliance efforts and remediate them over time.

DSPM Benefit #4 Enforce Least Privilege Access Control

Organizations must work towards creating robust access policies and controls. This can be achieved if security teams can ensure leave privilege access across the organizations. However, determining which users need access to the data and the level of permission to edit or change the data can be challenging, given the complex nature of the cloud and the scale of data.

Moreover, when security teams have to tackle such scenarios, they take either a less permissive or a wider permissive path. If stakeholders' access to data is withheld, they could be unable to make the most of it. Similarly, if teams are granted wider access, it could expose the data and the organization to multiple risks.

DSPM solutions provide organizations with access intelligence based on users, roles, and geographies. With a tight-knit collaboration of sensitive data intelligence, regulatory intelligence, and access intelligence, DSPM allows teams to view which users can access what data in different systems and the level of permissions they have for each data system or the data. The solution can further help monitor the users who are actually accessing the systems or the sensitive data. DSPM can also help teams identify users who have permission but haven't accessed the data system or the data in a long time. This insight can help enforce the least privileged controls by revoking the access of such users.

DSPM can also help teams identify non-compliant data access. For instance, the solution can identify users who have permission to access data in violation of cross-border laws and users who have accessed data in violation of such laws.

DSPM Benefit DSPM #5 Understand the Flow of Data

From the point of creation to retention and then deletion, data transformation can occur at any given point in time. For instance, in a typical customer transaction, the system captures customers’ data, like their credit card numbers. This raw data is then processed and stored in a database. Later, the same data can be used by different teams across an organization for various purposes, such as the business intelligence team may use the same data to understand customer behavior or business forecasting. Similarly, external partners would use it for advertising purposes.

In large organizations, hundreds of thousands of such transactions happen every hour of the day. Thus, it becomes difficult, especially for security teams, to monitor and manage such a large transformation of data across its lifecycle, which may lead to security gaps.

DSPM helps organizations streamline and understand the flow of data using a variety of signals. For instance, data lineage helps visualize the transformation of data and its usage across various systems. Data mapping shows processes that leverage data for various purposes. Similarly, clustering shows duplicate data, suggesting that it may have been copied from one place to another. By integrating DSPM solutions with streaming environments like Kafka or Confluence, users can get further insights and visibility of streaming data.

Go Beyond the Traditional DSPM Boundaries with Securiti

Securiti, the #1 rated DSPM, offers the Data Command Center, a centralized platform built to replace the siloed DSPM approach with a unified framework. The solution provides complete data visibility, deeper contextual intelligence, and unified controls across all clouds, including on-prem, private clouds, public clouds, multi-clouds, and SaaS applications.

It enables teams to enforce robust access policies and controls, automate data mapping across systems, prioritize risks based on sensitive data exposure, and monitor data lineage across its lifecycle.

Schedule a demo to learn more about Securiti’s Data Command Center.

Frequently Asked Questions about DSPM Benefits

Data Security Posture Management (DSPM) is a data-centric solution that provides comprehensive visibility of data and how it is accessed and used. Apart from providing deeper visibility, DSPM helps protect data against exposure, reduce ROT data and thus attack surface, and resolve access governance risks, to name a few.

DSPM provides a clear picture of an organization’s data landscape across public clouds. Security teams get a clear sense of what data they have in their environment, where it is located, who’s accessing the data, and who is using it. With these valuable insights, teams can operationalize appropriate policies and controls around various data obligations, including security, privacy, governance, and compliance.

Compliance requirements vary across jurisdictions and standards. However, upon a closer breakdown and inspection of those requirements, it can be noticed that all of that comes down to the understanding of data, i.e., what type of data it is, where it is, or how it is accessed. Without these crucial insights, compliance can be challenging. DSPM helps teams overcome these challenges by giving the complete context of the data so that security and privacy teams can use those insights to operationalize relevant obligations around data.

DSPM solutions can help security teams prevent potential data exposure or leaks, accidental data loss, and data theft. With accurate classification and tagging, teams can place appropriate controls around data based on its sensitivity and importance. For instance, data teams may place dynamic masking on sensitive data in structured tables to enable secure data sharing.

DSPM solutions can benefit every business that collects, processes, shares, sells, and transfers data, especially sensitive data. DSPM solutions are ideal not only as a data security tool but also as a robust data access governance solution.

Join Our Newsletter

Get all the latest information, law updates and more delivered to your inbox


More Stories that May Interest You