SoFi's Cloud Data Security Journey with Sentra

Data Security
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Last Updated: 
January 4, 2024
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The recent webinar, featuring SoFi’s Director of Product Security, Pritam H Mungse, along with Senior Staff Application Security Engineer, Zachary Schulze, and Sentra’s Director of Customer Success, Aviv Zisso, provided valuable insights into managing data security in cloud-native environments. This discussion is crucial for organizations grappling with the challenges of data sprawl, security, and compliance in the ever-evolving digital landscape.

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Understanding the Challenges

The webinar kicked off by exploring complexities faced by security teams in cloud-native environments. Pritam highlighted issues such as data duplication, lack of visibility, and the risks of unauthorized access and compliance violations.

These challenges emphasize the importance of developing robust strategies for data management and protection in cloud environments. Businesses need to be smart about how they manage and protect their data in the cloud. It's not just a one-and-done thing; it's an ongoing process of figuring out the best way to keep your data safe in the ever-changing world of cloud computing.

Proactive Data Protection: The Starting Point

A significant portion of the discussion centered on proactive data protection. The speakers emphasized understanding where and how data is stored and accessed in the cloud. Pritam noted, “understanding where your data is...is the first step for you to be able to say, now I can protect that data.” This statement encapsulates the essential first step in any data security strategy: gaining visibility into data creation and storage.

Prioritizing Risks: Aligning with Organizational Goals

Addressing the challenge of risk prioritization, the conversation shifted to aligning security measures with the organization's goals and risk appetite. Pritam elaborated on the importance of this alignment and the need for a well-defined internal policy framework to guide the prioritization process effectively.

Action and Remediation: Building a Framework

The panelists then delved into the processes of taking action and remediating potential data security issues. They discussed the need for systematic and repeatable approaches to address data security concerns, emphasizing the significance of a structured remediation framework within organizations. This makes it clear that building a robust framework is also an investment in the ongoing health and strength of an organization's data security. This strategic focus helps organizations navigate current challenges while also positioning them to proactively address future threats in an ever-evolving digital landscape.

Leveraging Sentra for Enhanced Data Security

SoFi's experience with Sentra formed a core part of the discussion, highlighting three main usage aspects:

  • Data Catalog Creation: Utilizing Sentra's discovery and classification capabilities, SoFi developed a centralized data catalog, enhancing the visibility and management of their data. Zach shared, “The next almost natural step to that is like the creation of a single place to understand and direct you to where all this data actually exists.”
data catalog creation
  • Compliance Adherence: The webinar explored how SoFi used Sentra to map data to various compliance frameworks. Zach discussed the importance of custom data classes and policies, allowing for alignment with both industry standards and internal requirements. Sentra's capabilities extended beyond mere automation, becoming an integral part of SoFi's proactive approach to meeting and exceeding compliance expectations.
compliance adherence
  • Data Access Governance: The conversation also covered how Sentra improved SoFi’s data access governance. Pritam highlighted, “being able to go from a different lens and answer those questions is super nice.” This reflects the depth of insight and control that Sentra provided in managing data access.
data access governance

The Critical Role of Accurate Data Classification

Accurate data classification was a key topic, with the speakers discussing the challenges and importance of correctly identifying sensitive data. They stressed that accurate classification is foundational to successful data security programs, as it directly impacts the effectiveness of protection strategies. Further, they discussed how automating data classification with Sentra proved crucial in their diverse data ecosystem, spanning various stores and cloud environments. Manual classification, given the complexity, would have taken a very long time, making the automated approach significantly valuable in streamlining the process and ensuring timely and accurate identification of sensitive data.

SoFi's data classification with Sentra

Integrating Sentra into SoFi’s Security Framework

The webinar concluded with reflections on the integration of Sentra into SoFi's existing security workflows and policies. The speakers underscored how Sentra's capabilities have been instrumental in SoFi's efforts to tackle data security challenges comprehensively, from discovery and classification to compliance adherence and governance.

The insights from SoFi’s journey provide valuable lessons for organizations looking to enhance their data security in cloud-native environments. The discussion highlighted the importance of visibility, accurate classification, and a structured approach to data security, underlining the benefits of integrating advanced tools like Sentra into security strategies.

Watch the full SoFi webinar recording.

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