Data is the greatest asset a company can possess today.

It’s a treasure trove that allows the company to offer personalized offerings and improve its product experience. From marketing, sales, and customer service to legal, and finance, every function within the company benefits from the application of data.

As companies started to collect more customer data, safeguarding it became a top priority.

Last year, over 36 billion records were exposed to data breaches by the first half of the year itself.

This is a matter of concern because governments have also made it mandatory for companies to comply with data privacy laws such as the GDPR and CCPA. Non-compliance could attract fines between $2500 and $7500 per violation for CCPA and €20 million or 4% of the turnover for GDPR. It’s fair to say that companies are aware of the repercussions of not safeguarding data. It’s in that context that they are trying to maintain data security and integrity by implementing a robust Master Data Management (MDM) strategy.

So, how can MDM help to address the data security concerns of a company?

Let’s explore.

How Can MDM Strategy Address Data Security Concerns?

At its core, MDM helps to improve the data quality and consolidate data from disparate systems into a standard format to provide a single view to the user. Retail companies, for instance, rely on the centralized MDM system to get 360-degree insight into their customers across all touchpoints to personalize their experience.

However, MDM also serves another purpose. Without MDM, a customer's sensitive data would be stored in silos, making it vulnerable to attacks. MDM preserves the quality of the data, but it also ensures that the data is not exposed to any threats by making it necessary for companies to pay attention to security policies while implementing it.

Here are some ways in which it helps to address data security concerns.

1. User authentication

User authentication is one of the key values of MDM. With MDM, the admin can ensure that only approved people have access to the application. Each user is provided with a unique user name and password to access the data. When a user enters their credentials, it is compared with the database to verify if it exists. If it does not exist, then the user does not get access to the data in the application. Strong user authentication helps the company safeguard its data from unauthorized users. A good MDM solution will include an internal user authentication protocol to ensure authentic access to data.

2. User authorization

Although user authentication safeguards the data to a certain extent, companies should be cautious in ensuring that only the right people can access the data. One way to establish that security is through role-based access. Companies can set privileges for each user so not everyone can access all the data available in MDM. For example, companies can set authorizations that only product managers can access product variant details. No other team such as sales or marketing can access such finer details of the product without appropriate authorization. They could define that only certain roles can make changes to the data, ensuring more consistency and immutability. This level of authorization only enhances the security and safeguards the sanctity of data further. The best part it does not slow down the processes because sometimes tight security levels could make it difficult for any user to access the data.

3. Alignment of processes and people with data governance

Compliance rules cannot be restricted to the database alone. The MDM strategy can be successful only if compliance rules are extended to the users who are granted access to the data. It should also be a part of the security management processes. The success of data governance policies is dependent on the alignment of the processes and users with the compliance rules. So, focus on aligning the processes and users with the MDM strategy to enhance data security. It helps in establishing transparency in the business processes, workflows, and databases.

4. Vulnerability management

Data is vulnerable to internal and external threats. Implementing an MDM strategy compels companies to regularly analyze, remediate, and monitor the data risks before deployment in the MDM platform. At such times, the company can set processes to discover sensitive data within the MDM repository, analyze if it is susceptible to any threats or risks, apply encryption and data security controls to remediate risks, and continuously monitor it to thwart any attempts of gaining unauthorized access. The vulnerability management process can then be done repeatedly to preserve the sanctity of the data within MDM.

Conclusion

be possible only if the program is established and implemented properly with a specific focus on managing security risks. This is important because a poorly implemented MDM strategy could result in a poor business outcome and become a liability for the company. It’s apparent that to ensure that the MDM strategy solves data security concerns, the company must partner with the right expert with experience in such MDM engagements.

Codifyd helps companies across the MDM lifecycle, right from design and strategy to implementing and maintaining MDM platforms, so they can leverage the full potential of the data at hand, securely.