540 Million Facebook Users – Do You Know Where Your Data Is?

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540 Million Facebook Users – Do You Know Where Your Data Is?

Poor Facebook. It seems to continually get itself into hot water over privacy issues. Half the time, it doesn’t even seem to be sorry. It’s that’ business as usual until caught ‘attitude that I find annoying.

Researchers at the cybersecurity firm UpGuard recently discovered hundreds of millions of Facebook user records stored on unprotected storage servers. One database belonged to an app called At the Pool, and the other to a company called Cultura Colectiva. According to UpGuard, neither company responded to requests to have the data removed, and Facebook contacted Amazon to pull the data offline.

What has this got to do with your security and your organization? A great deal, actually. Many applications now claim to offer collaboration. Years ago, statistics indicated that no one wanted to communicate, yet now the story is different. The average Office 365 account has 74 business partners. According to one source, 58 percent of companies have over 100,000 folders open to everyone. And Ponemon Institute reports that 2 out of 3 insider breach incidents are due to employee or contractor negligence. On average, it takes 72 days to contain an insider threat. OK, enough gloom and doom. I think you get the picture.

I do want to focus on what we call secure collaboration. What does it do? It not only looks at credentials and permissions to access information, but limits what gets shared, down to the paragraph in a document. “Who cares?” you ask. Well you should. Do you know what is hidden in your data or what users have access to?

The Target data breach was caused by one of its partners, causing irreparable harm to the company. Facebook couldn’t or didn’t keep track of its data in the incidents mentioned above. Let me give you another example. Years ago, we had a client managing a very large project. In fact, the project had two competitors working on it and our client did not want information that was sensitive or confidential to be shared. Secure collaboration did the trick, and prevented a migraine for the project manager.

Point our insight engine in the right direction and it classifies structured, unstructured, and semi-structured data to a taxonomy. It doesn’t just generate metadata. It generates what we call compound term metadata, which comprises multi-word terms that represent a phrase, subject, or concept, to capture the ‘aboutness’ of the data. Content that doesn’t contain the exact taxonomy classification term but does share similar attributes or meaning will also be auto-classified. So you can know, without a doubt, what’s in your content, what can be shared, and who it should be shared with. Don’t you think you should know?

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