Organizations are now subject to stringent and numerous data privacy regulations they must adhere to. This requires them to have a deep understanding of what data they have and continually be aware it is being used. Thus, data lineage and data privacy go hand-in-hand.
Strict Regulations Worldwide
The introduction of Europe’s GDPR marked a proliferation of tight compliance regulations worldwide, such as the CCPA in the United States and amendments to India’s Information Privacy Act 2000 and Australia’s Privacy Act 1988. Such data protection laws are strict, with non-compliance now carrying heavy penalties including growing fines.
In addition to these general laws, another layer of complexity is added specific to the industry an organization is in. For example, BCBS 239 is a set of 14 principles to ensure banks have strong internal risk management and risk data aggregation. HIPAA sets the standard which private health information must be secured in the US. The PCI DSS specifies how sellers are required to accept, process, store and transmit cardholder data.
Finally, atop location and industry specific requirements, new laws are always being developed and implemented as time and threats evolve. These include the California Privacy Rights Act and Colorado Privacy Act to become enforced early 2023. It is reality that complex data privacy requirements will continue to deepen and loom over organizations. Which begs the question: How does data lineage ensure data privacy compliance?
Know your Data Flows
To ensure your data is being used in accordance with the applicable regulations, you must have a clear understanding of your data. Given how much data is now moving through organizations, automated data lineage is now critical for tracing these movements through detailed technical systems. With data lineage, all the data in your enterprise becomes identifiable and observable within its physical and business context. Transformations and interactions are also mapped out so that data flows can be easily understood.
But why is it so important for organizations to know their data flows for data privacy purposes?
Better Understanding of Your Data
Automated data lineage should provide a rapid visualization of your chosen data asset’s complete flow and transformation history. This grants data security teams a quick and invaluable grasp of the state of your data, its history and the transformations it has undergone.
This clears up basic questions like: Who is using the data? Where is the data coming from? Why is the data the way it is? Understanding of your data sets the groundwork for your data security initiatives as you then can identify what data is at risk, why it is at risk, where it is and what needs to be done.
Rapid Impact Analysis and Remediation
Having your specific data assets visually represented grants insight to their upstream and downstream impacts and relationships. This enhanced perspective to read the data enables your organization’s data security initiatives to ensure data privacy.
With more context on any given data asset, data owners are enabled to accurately assign it with classification levels. When there are changes to be made to datasets or systems, the impact of the change can be predicted. Whilst the value of this cannot be understated, from a data security perspective, impact analysis allows the data owner to know that no vulnerabilities would arise from the proposed change. In the case that data breaches do occur, your data security team can perform swift remedial action by first having an immediate visual representation of the data, and second, having visibility into how the at-risk data asset affects other data and systems.
Data Validation and Trust
Data lineage at its core is a tool for data teams to trace the origin of a data asset. Given the immense volume of data organizations interact with from a plethora of sources, lineage is now invaluable for data privacy and regulatory compliance.
Before your data teams work with a data asset, it is essential that the data came from a trusted source. Processing your organization’s data automatically and therefore having the ability to confirm the validity of any data immediately not only speeds up your workflows, it also ensures they are safe.
Maximize Data Lineage for Data Privacy
The synergy between data privacy efforts and strong data lineage capabilities is clear. To fully enable your data security protocols you must look for top-quality data lineage functionality in unison with the overall data governance project.
Alex is the Enterprise Data Catalog that unifies data governance at scale with world leading automated cross-application Data Lineage. Alex provides the ability to track, validate and remediate all your data assets from end-to-end across multiple different systems at speed. Powered by the world’s largest marketplace of connectors, with 95% of automated Lineage available out of the box, Alex is the Data Catalog best placed to enable enterprise-scale Data Privacy governance.
For more information on how Alex’s data lineage can enhance your data security, request a free personalized demo: