Why Your Org Needs DLP for Slack: Ensuring Long-Term Data Protection

Chris Martinez
September 22, 2020
Why Your Org Needs DLP for Slack: Ensuring Long-Term Data ProtectionWhy Your Org Needs DLP for Slack: Ensuring Long-Term Data Protection
Chris Martinez
September 22, 2020
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Cloud security requires long-term investments to get right. Today’s demands of remote work and collaboration across teams are forcing security leaders to make fast decisions about which business tools they should allow their orgs to adopt. Data loss prevention (DLP) is a good way to support cybersecurity policies that will safeguard sensitive data and perform at the highest levels of security over the long haul. In a previous post, we covered five ways that DLP for Slack supports essential cybersecurity initiatives for everyday safety, like staying in compliance and detecting unstructured data. In part two of this series on why your organization needs DLP for Slack, we’re sharing five ways DLP supports long-term holistic security goals for your organization, including giving your employees visibility into how security decisions are made on Slack and supporting security for the remote workforce. Here’s how Slack for DLP can make your organization’s security stronger for long-term success.

#1: Support remote work culture while securing data


Working from home is the new norm for many companies, thanks to COVID-19. When creating and sustaining a remote work culture, security must be a priority across your workforce. Information Age published an article that examined typical work from home behavior among employees, which included a study where 85% of the respondents take security instructions from the org’s IT team seriously. This is an encouraging number, but there’s still more work to be done.Even after the COVID-19 threat passes, orgs will likely embrace the flexibility and cost savings that come from expanded remote work policies. To make this sustainable for the long term, security leaders need a solution to protect their cloud SaaS apps and data from threats that come from inside the organization. Employees may feel like they are shielded from data loss while working in the office, thanks to the organization's firewall or other internal safety measures. But when they start working from home, those guardrails are less effective — or nonexistent. TechRepublic reported in August that 44% of companies said they didn't provide cybersecurity training focused on the potential threats of working from home.Because you can’t supervise every user on every system, adding a DLP solution to your Slack workspaces will help you manage any threats that could come from employees sharing data improperly over the platform. Securing your Slack instance with DLP will allow you to sustain remote work, without adding risk as you expand your distributed workforce. Fewer barriers to remote work can unlock greater productivity across your organization. You can support that growth by introducing DLP for Slack to protect important data.

#2: Prove the value of security to your org

security slack DLP

The bottom line has become an even bigger battle for organizations in the wake of the Coronavirus. Lost revenue streams and diminished client bases are a common problem for companies across all sectors as the pandemic stretches into the fall (and likely beyond). That means that every new additional software or tool is likely to be highly scrutinized to determine if it’s really necessary for the company. IT leaders can still justify increased spend on security platforms, even in trying times. AiThority reported that the spend on cybersecurity solutions for 2020 was $42 billion pre-pandemic, up from $34 billion in 2017. They also found that 55% of major organizations will boost their investments in automation solutions as a top security priority this year.DLP for Slack is a cost-effective way to protect business-critical data that’s also very easy to see in action. You can prove the value of adding a new DLP platform to your tech stack by showing how the DLP solution works to protect data, and hopefully build a strong case to keep DLP on board long after the pandemic.

#3: Create more proactive security policies

DLP proactive security

Data security is a team sport. Everyone in the org should be invested in good digital behavior at work. The shared responsibility model for cloud security is one way to establish a long-term, proactive security posture for your org.We previously took an in-depth look into the shared security model. What you should know is how the shared responsibility model applies to adopting DLP for Slack: security in the cloud, which means security within the cloud environment itself. Adding DLP to your Slack will allow users to work in a safer environment and see how their actions impact the org’s security as a whole. Look for a DLP solution that provides notifications and alerts, as those features can further help users see which decisions are being made around data sharing policies on Slack.It’s much easier to get teams on board with policies they can see in action and understand on a fundamental level. Make it plain to see by citing the shared responsibility model and by giving users a view into how DLP works within Slack to protect sensitive data. Users will be more likely to support these security policies in the end.

#4: Understand your org’s security history and plan for a more secure future

DLP history and future

Dr. Carl Sagan once said, “You have to know the past to understand the present.” Past behaviors and policies shape how orgs think about their data security today, for better or for worse. DLP is a solution for your current data security questions, and it can help you plan for a more secure future by looking at the past of your org’s data sharing activity. Look for a DLP for Slack solution that offers historical scanning. Historical and real time scans of your entire Slack instance ensure a holistic approach to security. Scans can help clean up your security posture and maintain it to remove as much human error as possible. This can be a major data loss vector, especially when IT teams don’t always enforce security policies or stick to best practices. Help Net Security published an article in August 2020 where they found the following:

  • 38% of IT workers who do not strictly enforce security policies said their organization’s method for monitoring is not robust.
  • 29% of IT workers said, “It’s just too hard and time consuming to track and enforce.”
  • 28% of IT workers said, “Our employees get more done if we just let them manage their own software.”

IT teams must use security policies together with tools to maintain the highest levels of data security within their orgs. By using historical scans with DLP for Slack, security leaders can obtain a deeper understanding of which data has been at risk of loss or exposure over time, and craft better policies to protect that data going forward.

#5: Stay on top of security with automation

DLP automation

2020 was a year impacted by many high profile security incidents, like the Twitter breach that happened via leaked credentials in the org’s internal Slack channel. A DLP solution that scans Slack automatically will catch data that should not be shared between users on the platform. You should also look for a platform that features custom settings that will take actions on any message containing sensitive data, like delete or notify an admin. The number of threats to data security in the cloud make it impossible to monitor and mitigate data loss on your own. An automated DLP platform for Slack will give you the control you need to protect sensitive data from loss or exposure. It’s a good way to reduce your risk as your org takes on new technology like Slack — you can level up collaboration for your teams and have peace of mind that data will never be exposed thanks to automated scans.

Putting it all together: protecting data now and for the long haul

IT teams are constantly challenged to protect data in the cloud. New tools and new business problems demand fast changes, and sometimes with limited budgets and short runways for decision making and implementation. Adding DLP for Slack is a quick and easy way to ensure data safety without interrupting productivity. It can also be the first step toward a more thorough cloud security posture. Minimizing risk in one platform opens the door to thinking of how to secure other resources your teams use every day. Set an example for data security with DLP for Slack, and soon you might find that DLP makes sense across your entire organization.

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