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Managing Unstructured Data in a GDPR World

Author: Nate Latessa, President

A recent article in TechCrunch discusses GDPR and its relationship to AI innovation. Although I think the headline is a bit misleading as I have not heard of anyone in widespread panic mode yet, it does raise interesting questions and leads directly to GDPR solutions Heureka has already put in place.


Ability to “find all copies of regulated data, regardless of how and where it is stored” 

Heureka thrives in the world of unstructured data. Both the article and Gartner points out that unstructured data can account for 80% of a companies overall data volume. Heureka helps search, organize and categorize data by creating a full seachable text and metadata index for desktops, laptops and file shares. Indexes always remain local with no required centralization of information! Searching hundreds or thousands of endpoints begins in one minute or less and results in detailed understanding of overall file count as well as specific file locations, dates, classification tags and other metadata information.


“If the user requests that the company permanently and completely delete all the data about them, the company must comply and show proof of deletion.”

Heureka offers multiple file-level actions including collection and quarantining. However to help customers comply with GDPR’s “right to be forgotten” regulations, Heureka’s delete command is perhaps the most powerful as it allows users to search, investigate and when necessary delete files from endpoints regardless of location or operating system. All of this is done from a central interface giving a user complete control. Delete functions are saved actions and proof of deletion can easily be reported on.


“The new regulations require companies to protect PII with a level of security previously limited to patient health and consumer finance data.”

One of Heureka’s key talking points over the last several years is the fact that you don’t know what data to protect if you don’t know where it is! Many companies have been forced to create a one-size-fits-all workflow when trying to protect their data, and the volume of that data isn’t getting any smaller. This posture leads many companies into protecting pictures of the family cat in the same way they protect HR personnel or medical records, national or student id’s or intellectual property such as patents or formulas.

The basic fact is that unstructured data continues to grow exponentially and yet the tools allowing you to search and discover contents in unstructured data have not. Heureka changes this by allowing companies to pinpoint PII-level data with a nightly auto-classification engine along with PII scoring so that users can quickly and efficiently find the riskiest endpoint in an environment within seconds. A deeper-dive file level search delivers PII insight that used to be nearly impossible to discover.

Innovation continues but in many ways has already arrived with Heureka’s approach to GDPR and unstructured data.



GDPR panic may spur data and AI innovation