Google Maps and PII Repositories

Published On: March 4, 2020Categories: Blog

I’m a bit like an elephant. My long-term memory is excellent, my short-term, not so much. Which is good, because I remember fondly hiking as a kid on hikes that became lovingly known as Fiasco Tours.

I don’t want to mislead you. It’s not like the tours themselves were a fiasco. Despite the name, they were actually lots of fun. The fiasco relates to the lack of accuracy within the maps that we had. Back then, we’d visit the site of a ruin, and there would be a single moss-covered rock left where the Celts were victorious over the Saxons, or we’d find ourselves chased by bulls because the map was out of date. And escaping said scrum of bulls by jumping the wall and landing in “farm” slurry.

Now imagine just how different life would have been with an up-to-date and accurate map. Sure, there would have been no headlines, but when you have a data breach, the last thing you want is headlines.

This is what does for your network. We create and maintain an up-to-date, accurate map by discovering your PII repositories and your PII entities that are in use across the organization. Think of Google Maps for your network. The starting point is an old map of the area, which is then updated and maintained by Google vehicles examining the terrain, adding detail to the map, such as pictures of buildings, and updating any stale information. Similarly, discovers network elements, such as databases and file-shares by examining the terrain (to be exact, by examining the network traffic) and updating the network map. Additionally, learns which network elements are sharing data (specifically looking for PII) to map the flow throughout the organization accurately.

But we don’t stop there. We interrogate the relevant network elements that hold PII, to create another map – that of the lineage of PII across the network. We link individual data subject entities no matter where we find them, to create the full picture of that data subject. Which in turn, means that the right to be forgotten is basically a click away.

And this is what organizations can achieve today, whether they are trying to meet GDPR, CCPA, LGPD or any other data privacy laws.

As far as real-life hiking, I encourage you to go casual hiking with out of date maps. It is a lot more fun than taking smart devices with you, and the rewards far outweigh the risks. Let me know how it turns out. I’d love to hear more Fiasco Tours tales.