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In this fifth article in our data privacy and security series, Nesimi Buelbuel discusses big data security. Read the first installments of the series here.

The big fuss about securing your big data

To gain critical, real-time insights, organizations want to capture and process data from multiple sources. They want to analyze real-time streaming and event-based data alongside their own data lakes, informing decisions that affect business performance. But collecting, aggregating, and analyzing data from multiple systems is a complex job – one that SAP HANA was designed to simplify. With SAP HANA, you can feed data from multiple sources into one system, greatly simplifying data manipulation and analysis and speeding time to action.

But how do you govern and secure that data? Big data security must address increased data volumes, variety, and formats. It applies equally to structured and unstructured data, information from within and outside the organization. It governs advanced analytics — how you find relationships and patterns and how you use information to make better business decision. With escalating demand for visualization, predictive analysis software, and Hadoop interfaces, organizations can find themselves short of experts who understand how constant innovation affects data security and governance.

The realities for our customers

Despite the depth of their data sets and their desire to use big data to deliver real business results, many organizations lack a deep understanding of how to secure big data. They struggle to define the scope of data movement and usage, or to understand how big data ultimately functions in their particular business environment. Companies can’t figure out how or where to start with data analysis, security, compliance, or use. They may launch a solution, then get stuck along the way without the right expertise or guidance.

What does a typical big data security journey look like?

The road to big data success can’t happen without a plan. SAP services uses an engineered four-step approach to understanding and utilizing your big data: imagine, create, deploy, and amplify. Security is an important and integral part of every step of the journey. SAP HANA provides built-in security functions, frameworks, and interfaces that enable customers to meet security, legal, and regulatory requirements. With secure pre-configuration, you can integrate SAP HANA into existing security infrastructures and processes and implement different security policies to protect data and meet objectives. For example, SAP HANA Cloud Integration provides integrated transport and message level security with content encryption and certificate-based communication.

Compliance also plays an important role in big data environments. Your big data compliance approach depends on relevant country or industry rules and regulations as well as your own IT infrastructure, processes, and audit strategy. SAP HANA provides functions that support your compliance goals, such as best practices in security operations, need-to-know principles for separation of duties, control of privileged access, and audit abilities. SAP HANA also provides end-to-end documentation for the entire software lifecycle, including an extended security guide and recommendations on secure setup and operation.

What are the benefits of big data security?

To deal with new risks associated with big data, such as storing data in the cloud or accessing information from multiple sources for big data applications, you need the right tools and services to support ongoing security and compliance. The SAP Security Advisory Service can provide you with an impartial assessment and customized security strategy that includes a roadmap leveraging the SAP security standard practice implementation.

By securing your big data and SAP HANA environment, you can confidently drive new insights that lead to new business capabilities and opportunities. SAP services can help you deploy big data applications including demand signal management, fraud detection, sentiment intelligence, predictive analytics, and customer engagement intelligence – all of which can help you transform your business with data-driven insights.

Get started now

Wherever you are on your big data journey, SAP Security Advisory Services can help you assess capabilities and use cases, then help you design a roadmap with the database, architecture, and business process security and compliance you need. To learn more about how SAP consulting can help you benefit from big data, watch this short video or visit us online.

If you want to learn more, please visit the SAP Service & Support area at SAPPHIRE NOW 2015 in Orlando.

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