Posted by Ellen Wilson on March 28, 2017

Data Masking

As data volume grows exponentially, businesses are faced with the challenge of scaling their protection of sensitive information to meet government standards and to defend against theft. Data masking has emerged as the leading solution to accomplish this across all industries and verticals. Data masking is the process of creating a new version of an original data set that maintains the data formatting, but generates new data values. Hiding the original data in this allows it to still be usable for analytics, training, or testing, while ensuring that the underlying data is only visible to approved users.

Data masking is especially useful in industries that collect a significant volume of personally identifiable or sensitive data. In Healthcare, data masking can be used to protect a patient’s social security number, medical history, and other personal details. In higher education, where data is collected in large volumes on students and faculty personal information, data masking protects against unauthorized data access. Within HR departments, data on budgets, turnover, and employee compensations require data masking practices to protect against prying eyes.

Data masking can be a time-consuming process, so creating a repeatable, automated process would ensure consistent data masking and long-term data security as new data is added to the original report or database. One solution users may consider for their data masking is Excel, but Excel requires complex macros to hide the sensitive data. Additionally, the original data is only hidden in the spreadsheets, and can be recovered, which may not meet the user’s security standards.

By using a data prep tool like Monarch, users can not only securely mask sensitive data, but also automate their data preparation processes. Monarch can unlock hard-to-reach data within PDFs, HTML files and static reports, and eliminates manual data rekeying, blending, or cleaning. The time previously spent on these data preparation processes can then be focused on analyzing the information, allowing for more accurate and strategic decisions-making.

Start your 30-day free trial of Monarch, the industry’s leading solution for self-service data preparation, or watch the video below for an overview of our data masking capabilities:

 

 

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