BIG DATA can deliver big advantages. Platforms, including Hadoop and NoSQL, can hand companies unprecedented analytics, significant cost savings, and performance advantages over traditional architectures such as data warehouses and data marts. In addition, many web-based companies prefer NoSQL because of its proven advantages in data flexibility, scalability and performance.

But big data also has a dark side that companies need to guard against. As big data technologies are deployed more frequently by a greater number of companies, many are not using a consistent and comprehensive approach to identify their sensitive data and protect it from a breach. Recent attacks on companies including Sony, Anthem, Target and JPMorgan Chase1 demonstrate how significant the financial impact of data breaches can be. To understand where data is vulnerable and prevent against external and internal threats, companies need to take a second look at how their data is secured.

Information security threats are real and changing rapidly with security organizations struggling to keep up with the changing nature, complexity and scale of attacks. The high-profile attacks of 2014 were proof points that the threat landscape is rapidly mutating as attackers find even more devious ways to bypass security controls. Security and compliance managers are focused on this rapidly evolving landscape and developing capabilities for handling new threats.

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