Ever wish your storage could do more than just store stuff? That’s the vision of DataGravity, which today announced additional features that let its storage appliance tag and track files, support Hyper-V environments, and in general just make storage a little smarter.
The Nashua, NH-based storage company, founded in 2012, saw an opportunity to help IT administrators, particularly in the mid-market, get a better handle on what data they were actually managing, and hopefully better secure, search, and store it.
“Organizations today are storing more and more information, whether in file shares or virtualized environments,” said Jeff Boehm, DataGravity vice president of marketing. “While there are great tools for end point security … in the mid-market, where we’re focused, companies are really struggling with managing, securing, and understanding the data that they’re storing.”
Boehm said that adding more security into traditional storage has already been giving their customers results.
“What we’ve found is that literally 100% of our customers are finding sensitive data in their data shares and virtual environments [that was previously unknown to them],” he said.
And too often, that data is then walking away.
“We had a law firm that had an employee leave the firm, and she copied a whole bunch of files on to her Dropbox account as she was leaving,” he said. But because DataGravity logs and highlights sudden spikes in file requests, and because it fingerprints each file, the leak was caught as it was happening. “They could see all of the individual files that were being copied off to Dropbox.”
The company already had some experience in virtualized environment, support storage for VMware environments as well as shared network drives. Today’s update, version 2.2 of its Discovery Series platform, adds data awareness for Hyper-V environments.
The fingerprinting also has uses beyond tracking where files end up: Boehm said it can be used to quickly identify malware and other unwanted files, such as pirated music or movies hiding in storage. The fingerprinting uses the SHA–1 cryptographic hash standard, so file fingerprints can be shared across other services.
“Security is obviously a huge concern today for organizations, and people have spent a lot of time on the end points or the network, but at the end of the day, the data is housed some place,” said Boehm. "We think it’s a critical part of the infrastructure that people should pay attention to.