Midmarket CIOs must support the mobile and cloud processes that their business users and customers are accustomed to. Simultaneously, these IT execs are seeing the demand for data jump into and beyond the terabyte range — causing infrastructure bottlenecks. Because of this, it’s all too easy to expose sensitive information and become noncompliant with protection laws and industry rules and policies.

In some verticals, such as law or finance, exposing sensitive client data is a very serious matter. “It’s almost as if there is a perfect storm facing midmarket CIOs,” says Charles Moore, director of product marketing at Delphix, a data management company.  “Hackers are targeting personal information even more than financial data. It’s the type of information that’s the most desirable.” According to the digital protection provider Gemalto Security, in the first six months of 2015, identity theft was the cause of 75 percent of all compromised records, and accounted for 53 percent of all data breaches.

HIPAA Storm Brewing

But perhaps the most damaging sort of breaches are those that occur in health-care and related verticals — violating the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act is bad news to midmarket companies and health-care systems. Breaches means brand damage, legal repercussions, loss of patient or client trust, and even more. For instance, just recently, a Philadelphia-based nursing home system was hit with a $650,000 fine — only because someone stole an employee’s un-secured and un-encrypted mobile phone, which carried 412 residents’ personal data.

“Midsized health-care organizations, specifically, face a huge challenge because they have so much information to protect with so few resources and budget dollars,” says Moore. “And identity breaches, the most common form of data breach today, will typically circumvent an organization’s encryption protection.”

New Approach To Data Safety

Regrettably, traditional compliance technologies (like encryption) and processes can harm productivity — and still leave an organization vulnerable to identity breaches and data loss. However, midmarket CIOs can leverage another alternative: Data virtualization and data masking technology. The Delphix approach enables organizations to replace sensitive identifiable personal data with anonymized data. Such "masked" or anonymized data can be distributed to users, including remote workers or partners, without risk.

Leveraging Delphix' solutions provides organizations with greater threat protection than typically available  while it also enables productivity and efficiency levels that exceed the traditional capabilities of encryption. That's because data masking offers information protection the same type of virtualization efficiency that helps support today’s high levels of data center infrastructure productivity.

Data Masking As Future Platform

The Delphix data masking model is field-proven, as well. “With Delphix, we’ve saved between $6 million and $10 million dollars over the last three years in physical storage alone,” says Rick Hopfer, CIO of Molina Healthcare, a multi-state provider based in Long Beach, CA. “The ability to quickly deliver masked data with Delphix has enabled our team to shorten development cycles, reduce risk, and improve environment recovery.” (You can read more about Molina Healthcare and Delphix here.)

Leveraging Delphix' solutions also creates a foundation for future IT improvements that encryption can’t. “Masking enables more use cases, such as data analytics, that are very important to healthcare organizations,” says Moore.

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