File analysis is a process where large volumes of data are identified across servers, file shares, records, and email databases, among other locations. It allows organizations to get an overarching view of all of the data they have on and off-premise, where it is residing and who has access to it.

What are File Analysis Tools?

File analysis software and tools are used to search, track, analyze, and secure the data organizations have across platforms.  Another important function of these tools is to find and identify personally identifiable information (PII).

The prescribed steps in the file analysis process include:

  1. Identify files with a file analysis tool
  2. Analyze the file and classify content accordingly
  3. Secure and protect the data according to the appropriate compliance law specific to your industry or country 

The target business objective of adopting file analysis tools is to understand where all of their data is located, protect the sensitive personal data organizations have, and to ensure that privacy compliance laws are adequately enforced. File analysis tools offer a centralized view and control over the volumes of data across an organization.

While there are many net positive outcomes to performing file analysis, below are six specific benefits to the process.

Benefits of File Analysis Tools

  • Identifies sensitive data – File analysis tools allow organizations to identify PII and other sensitive data like driver’s license numbers, credit cards, passports, health records, financial data, and more.
  • Supports the move to remote work – As there is an increase in hybrid and remote workplaces, file sharing is becoming increasingly automated, and more businesses are transferring data to and from the cloud. It is more important than ever to have an understanding of who has access to data, who does not, how information is being protected, and how to scale efforts.
  • Creates more privacy – Privacy is first and foremost the most essential component to collecting customer data, and that begins with understanding where all your data resides. From there, you should have a sense of who has access to customer data, how it is shared, and how it is being protected.
  • Ensures compliance – Compliance laws like the GDPR, PDPA, CCPA, LGPD, and others continue to evolve. Businesses need to ensure they follow the regulations that apply to their industry or face hefty fines. Many of these data compliance laws call for companies to protect sensitive data, which can only be done if they know where it is.
  • Identifies data that should be deleted – Organizations often keep data that they could get rid of, and risk analysis helps identify these areas. Purging information on a regular cadence reduces vulnerabilities and saves file space wherever organizations may be storing it.
  • Helps with risk mitigation – File analysis helps with risk mitigation in that it detects, protects, and secures sensitive data and PII.

File Analysis and Data Privacy Compliance

File analysis ensures that organizations meet their regulatory and compliance requirements by identifying and analyzing how their data is currently being protected and identifying how organizations can make adjustments moving forward. Meeting compliance is an ongoing effort, which is why it is valuable to always have a file analysis solution in place at your business.

The anxiety around picking the right tools and solutions can be overwhelming, especially if your business has an extensive repository of data and a large base of customers to protect. Ground Labs’ award-winning solution, Enterprise Recon, is essential in finding and categorizing over 300 data types across various platforms at your organization. CISOs and data protection officers should not have the sole responsibility of tracking and mitigating data risk, which is why it is a business imperative to have a file analysis tool primed and deployed.

If you are ready to learn more about the benefits of file analysis and how to safeguard your data, meet with an expert today.

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