2018 was undoubtedly the year that put data privacy into the spotlight, and as we head into the last quarter of 2019 it shows no sign of trending downward. With the major data scandals of 2018 such as Facebook’s exposure of tens of millions of user accounts to Cambridge Analytica and the introduction of GDPR – the world’s most stringent data privacy law, the mood around privacy is shifting. Data privacy is now firmly on the agenda for organizations trying to keep up with changing global privacy laws, and consumers are sitting up and taking notice of how organizations use or misuse their data.

In this blog we’ll focus on data privacy from an organizations perspective, why it’s important, how it’s being unknowingly compromised, and what BlackFog can do to protect it.

What is Privacy?

Once described as “the right to be let alone,” privacy is now best described as the ability to control data we cannot stop generating, giving rise to inferences we can’t predict. And with an estimated 2.5 Quintillion bytes of data generated each day, the ongoing challenge is how to control the data we can’t stop generating and protect it from ever increasing malicious threats.

Why is Data Privacy Important?

In the wake of increasing data privacy concerns and the arrival of new regulations such as GDPR, POPI, and changes to the US data breach notification laws, protecting data privacy has never been more critical to ensuring business survival. We’ve all seen how losing customer data can damage a brand’s reputation, but negative PR aside, data breaches significantly impact the bottom line.  In addition to steep regulatory fines, class action lawsuits are also on the rise. Just recently it was announced that half a million British Airways customers have been given the green light to sue the airline after their personal details were compromised in a cyberattack.

Cyberattacks, data leaks and privacy missteps are becoming increasingly pervasive and damaging, so preventing valuable corporate information from leaving the confines of the business and falling into the wrong hands is more critical than ever.

How is Data Privacy Being Compromised?

Company data is being stolen – often unknowingly. Every day devices execute tens of thousands of transactions as employees and individuals browse the internet and use applications. A high proportion of these transactions are taking place in the background, without the user’s knowledge – often resulting in sensitive data being sent to unidentified servers in regions where high levels of cyber-attacks originate. In fact, recent BlackFog research showed that data exfiltration to Russia and China totalled more than 21% of all traffic in Q2.

Most organizations are totally unaware of the data exfiltration that is occurring on each device and the extent to which their privacy and security is compromised.

What is BlackFog?

BlackFog is an on-device data privacy and cybersecurity solution that detects and blocks the transfer of outbound data in real-time, preventing cyberattacks before they happen.

Why was BlackFog Created?

BlackFog was founded in 2015 by Dr Darren Williams, a veteran of 3 successful start-ups. While working at an acquiring company focused on recovering stolen laptops, it became apparent that hardware was becoming commoditized to a point where the value was no longer in the device itself, but the data on the device. Organizations had shifted from device centric to data centric in a short period of time. You can replace a device very quickly and easily, but it is much more costly and complex to recover from data theft and ultimately a data breach. As governments started designing new laws around privacy and data loss, such as GDPR it was a clear there were no adequate solutions in the market focusing on this problem.

Existing security solutions focus on preventing attacks via known vulnerabilities, such as Firewalls and Antivirus software. Realizing that attacks can easily thwart these standard security regimes gave BlackFog the impetus to develop BlackFog Privacy to protect devices from data theft and cyberattacks using behavioural profiling, ultimately preventing attacks before they can happen.

What Does BlackFog do to Protect Data Privacy?

In simple terms BlackFog blocks the exfiltration of data and ensures that what is on your device stays on your device. BlackFog acts as a guardian, constantly watching the outbound traffic flow and preventing any unauthorized data from ever getting out. BlackFog protects an organizations data and privacy enabling them to be compliant with data regulations such as GDPR and POPI.

What is Unique About BlackFog?

Lots of cybersecurity firms can tell you when a breach or attack has taken place and your data has been compromised. BlackFog stops it from happening in the first place. It’s inevitable that cybercriminals will find their way in; BlackFog prevents them from taking anything out by focussing on data loss, data profiling and data collection. BlackFog is the ONLY firm that tackles this problem at all three levels, ensuring maximum privacy protection.

Why do I Need a Data Privacy Solution?

Advances in technology and our increasing dependency on it means that data privacy is rapidly becoming a complex issue for individuals and the organizations responsible for protecting their personal information. Consumers are waking up to privacy concerns and are taking note of how companies protect their information. A recent study from IBM states that 94% of people feel that businesses must do more to actively protect them from cybersecurity threats. We live in an age of constant data breaches and privacy ethics violations so organizations must rethink how they approach data privacy.

The question to address is ‘Do you know where all of your all data is flowing from a security and compliance perspective?’ For most organizations the answer is no, you simply can’t control what you can’t see.

The risk is real – it’s no longer a question of if, but when a cyberattack will occur and your data will be compromised. It’s inevitable that hackers will find a way into the network, so you need a solution to stop them from getting out. Through a layered approach to security BlackFog spots, in real-time, when an attacker is attempting to remove unauthorized data from your device or network and stops them in their tracks.  BlackFog is the only company able to block outbound dataflow while keeping all data on the device. BlackFog defends against ransomware, spyware, malware, phishing, unauthorized data collection and profiling.

We Already Have an Antivirus and Firewall Solution, Isn’t That Enough?

Antivirus and Firewall protections are part of a layered approach to security and they are great at stopping existing, known threats. But they are simply not enough for the sophisticated threats we see today. It’s a fact that 77% of new attacks use fileless techniques to bypass existing solutions and incorporate dynamic signatures to evade detection. Think of it as the attacker wearing gloves. BlackFog focuses on WHAT the attacker is doing to prevent infection and data theft. By focusing on preventing data loss, data profiling and data collection BlackFog stops the attack before it happens.

How Does BlackFog Help Protect Data Privacy?

  • Data privacy is all about owning and controlling YOUR data and BlackFog ensures what is on your device stays on your device
  • BlackFog provides On-Device Protection – no data is sent to the cloud
  • BlackFog Prevents the flow of data to the Dark Web
  • BlackFog STOPS the activation of threats and data theft
  • BlackFog blocks more than 99% of web advertising, a major distribution channel for malware
  • BlackFog is the ONLY firm that offer on-device protection from data exfiltration
  • BlackFog provides 12 layers of defense against ransomware, spyware, malware, phishing, unauthorized data collection and profiling

Why is a Preventative Approach to Data Privacy Required?

Having a plan to deal with the inevitability of a data breach is critical but it’s no longer enough. Organizations must deploy proactive solutions to counter these new threats to our data privacy. Hackers will invariably infiltrate a network. Organizations must implement cybersecurity tools that can identify threats in real-time, shut them down and stop them in their tracks before they can remove any data. To remain compliant with data legislation, a layered approach providing protection from ransomware, spyware, malware, phishing, unauthorized data collection and profiling is essential.

Ready to learn more? Register for your demo to see BlackFog in action.