Do Data Loss Prevention (DLP) Architectures Matter?

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I just found a post in another DLP group asking users for installation graphics in order to understand a particular vendor’s deployment methodology.  The resulting comments included things like, “why study the installation of the technologies instead of just the capabilities?”

I found that response to be nearly idiotic.  I don’t usually respond in these forums for fear of offending some poor soul, but I couldn’t help myself. 

I find xxxxxx’s question very useful and an appropriate discussion topic. No one questions the need to cover critical requirements and I assume xxxxxxx’s smart enough to know that.

One of the criticisms of DLP is that it’s complex. Just ask any company that has tested two or more DLP technologies and they’ll tell you some are more complex than others. Depending on an organization’s tolerance for complexity, their technical skill level or even just their desire to minimize time spent overseeing four, five or six DLP boxes (whether appliances or software), a vendor’s architectural approach is as important as how well a feature list mirrors requirements. (In fact, shouldn’t architecture itself be a requirement?)

I agree that deployments are easy, at least conceptually. However, in practice, that’s not always the case. I spoke with two companies in the past week who complained of complications during PoC installs–being done by the vendors themselves. In one case, the vendor never got it to work to spec. In both cases the vendors were Gartner MQ leaders.

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