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Achieving Defensible Data with Data Classification

Author: Tim Steele

Chief Legal leaders are focused on compliance, risk mitigation and data.

63% are most concerned about Business Risk

60% say Data Privacy is the biggest legal risk

1700%: the anticipated increase of remote workforce

At the center of these risks and concerns is data; particularly, unstructured data. Unstructured data is 80% of all data, it is the home to PII as well as it is growing exponentially. 

Defensible Data is achieved by a disciplined process of data classification of unstructured data. Defensible Data enables:

–Compliance with regulatory and privacy initiatives

–Protection of critical as well as sensitive data from cybersecurity threats

–Timely response to litigation as well as investigations. 

Defensible Data is data value optimized, data risk minimized.

Data Classification is the point at which we can disposition data based on risk, duplicative nature, or value to the organization:

“Tagging” is the way in which we identify Personal Information (PII/PHI/PCI) as well as other data for a very specific disposition.

–Identify sensitive data to include Personal Information and Intellectual Property

–Identify as well as scrub ‘ROT’ data (Redundant, Obsolete and Trivial) 

–Classify data based upon Information Governance principles

–Act on specific files to include Quarantine, Collect, Delete or Encrypt

3 key outcomes from classified data:

1 – Risk mitigation

2 – Optimization of data for litigation as well as matter proportionality

3 – Data privacy compliance

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