Data protection is, of course, a rather large group that covers a lot of territory and encompasses a variety of tools and services. The idea of data protection is at the core of information security. After all, if it were not for the data, we wouldn't need all of these elaborate protections. So, as we've said many times, since it's all about the data why not go straight to the data and protect it directly? Easier to say, as is the case with most types of protection in our digital world, than it is to do.
There is more than one mode of data protection. One is ensuring that data is not exfiltrated from within the enterprise as the result of some sort of malware or a malicious (or careless) user. Another is avoiding the frauds that encourage careless behavior on the part of employees. Yet another is a hybrid approach that ties many levels of protection together on a single coherent platform. We saw all of those this year. And we are treating one of the vendors somewhat differently than in previous years.
In previous years, we have looked at a flagship product and used that as the exemplar for the organization. We picked a product that was, as well, particularly innovative in its own right. We did that this year, mostly, but we have begun – starting over the past couple of years – to see the integrated platform with clip-in modules more and more frequently. This year, in this group, we saw that especially prominently. So much so that we saw that itself as the innovation and have treated it as such. However, it is our bet that you will see more and more of this until it defines the industry. The real change is that increasingly the snap-in modules may be third-party products or tools. That is a big deal in our view.
So, with all of that as background, let's take a look at some intriguing products and companies, not to mention platforms. This group might well be a harbinger of things to come in future years. At any rate, we here in SC Labs certainly think so.