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June 2004

Prevent data loss, theft with secure data outputs

Every Computer 101 class starts with a description of the flow of inputs, processing and outputs. Simple, right? Not when applied to computing environments, such as corporate networks populated with thousands of "smart" devices. In this environment, the inputs are every point of entry into the network (gateways, hosts, remote users, etc.); the processing is every connected system and application; and the outputs are, well, everywhere. Outputs, or the "Big O's" as I call them, are where lots of unchecked security leaks occur. Compliance with regulations and policies is a hot topic these days, and outputs play a significant role in evaluating an organization's ability to exercise a reasonable level of data control. Enterprises are paying more attention to inappropriate outbound network activity and are using traffic monitors to identify Kazaa and other P2P apps. Some organizations are going a step further by deploying data protection systems for specific applications--for example, using solutions that identify and restrict ...

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