Fighting Data Leakage With a Shadow

While solutions to protecting against data leakage abound, Lumension thinks it has a unique approach. And now it's got a U.S. patent to prove it.

Data leakage is one of the greatest security risks facing IT organizations. The challenge of keeping confidential information secured is one that many security vendors claim to solve through different means.

Among the many vendor solutions is that offered by security vendor Lumension Security, which now has a new U.S. patent to prove its "shadowing" approach to data leakage protection is something unique.

"The shadowing technology underlying the patent enables administrators to keep an audit trail of files read or written to removable personal devices by end users," Dennis Szerszen, senior vice president for worldwide marketing at Lumension, explained to InternetNews.com.

One method by which Lumension "shadows" behavior is based on a simple path/filename audit trail, linking the read/write activity to a system and logged-on user. It also can use a much more detailed bit-for-bit copy method, more suitable for forensic purposes than security compliance.

"In either case, the information gathered is secured and available only to administrators, although end users can know that shadowing is turned on by simply reviewing their list of approved devices via the Sanctuary Device Control end-user task," Szerszen said.

Lumension's Sanctuary is an endpoint device-enforcement technology for enterprises, which, thanks to the shadowing technology, also provides detailed auditing.

Through Sanctuary, the company is aiming to help enterprises overcome some of the challenges of implementing endpoint security, such as simply having the resources required to implement and manage solutions.

"Sanctuary is literally designed to minimize the need for extensive oversight or security knowledge by embedding technology such as shadowing behind simple-to-use administration and management GUIs," Szerszen said. "In addition, Lumension acknowledges that security must be attained as a partnership between administrators and their end users. Sanctuary is designed to communicate with end users, enabling them to adopt new technologies without burdening them with the need to be security experts. "

While the name Lumension might be new, the company and its patented data leakage technology are not. Until September, the company had been known as PatchLink. Following a merger earlier this year, Lumension also includes the assets of security vendor SecureWave, such as its Sanctuary endpoint security technology, which has been in the market since at least 2004.

Szerszen said since the renaming, Lumension has grown in both revenue and product development.

"We can offer our customers three best-of-breed product lines and are working to extend these product capabilities and integrate them so that our customers can achieve the many business and technical synergies that the combination of these products deliver," Szerszen said.

He also said the company has worked to expand its capabilities with partnerships. Lumension recently struck a deal with Websense, which Szerszen said would provide "in-line data analysis and policy capabilities together with Sanctuary's ability to enforce data transfer policies to endpoint storage devices."

Those efforts are all aimed at delivering a security platform that provides a single, policy-based Web interface for unified administration, management and compliance reporting, Szerszen said.

"By making the architecture more extensible, Lumension will also increase the depth of vulnerability coverage and speed of remediation across the enterprise, enabling customers to quickly assess security risk and remediate vulnerabilities and configuration issues in real time," he said.

"By leveraging third-party vendor content from leading application and OS vendors, Lumension will deliver real-time, ready-to-deploy remediation packages," like language localization, operational and hardware patches, Szerszen added.



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