Varonis DatAdvantage and Data Classification Framework
DatAdvantage: $17,000; Data Classification Framework: A bit more than $8,000 for 100 users.
Strengths: Full feature set.
Verdict: Strong features and performance, but could use a little refinement of its documentation.
Varonis DatAdvantage and the Data Classification Framework work to identify where any and all of your sensitive and proprietary information lies. Critical to any data loss prevention operation is access control, and that is where Varonis shines. The tool enables you to specifically find a file anywhere on your network, or look for any file in a category.
The set up was aided by a WebEx session with support, so installation was a breeze. Varonis requires a version of Microsoft SQL Server (supported versions listed on its website), from there the installer can take over and set almost everything up on its own. But, once the Varonis solution is installed, that really is just the beginning: Setting up which rules you want to be enacted is the more intensive portion. This depends on your organization and will vary anywhere from default install to pages of rules.
Varonis DatAdvantage tied into our Window File Server with a point and click without any issues. The scheduled scanning of network resources worked cleanly. The tool can either install an agent to the file server, or retrieve everything itself with existing Windows protocols. We ran into no issues with the functionality of this product whatsoever. It was a pleasure to use. The offering found all of the information and classified it correctly using default compliance rules provided by Varonis. This includes a dictionary of provided words that may indicate sensitive information, PCI-compliance, along with a long list of other compliance-based rules.
Varonis includes what effectively amounts to an administrator search engine to find - across everything Varonis monitors - any time a searched word is mentioned, where and who has access. The access list for certain files, folders and servers was simple and intuitive, so much so that we wondered why no one else does this quite so well, or have something this clean and easy to change effective permissions for users. Varonis makes it hard to accidentally assign permissions to too many users, and shows you where, at a glance, you might have too much access from certain users. Varonis uses what it calls "Effective Permissions" to show users how permissions cascade, or don't, from folders up the tree all the way to files many folders deep.
Varonis has a site containing all of its documentation in an orderly fashion. Although we would have liked to see a bit more documentation, the information that was there was good, well laid out and filled with effective screen shots. In fact, the documentation was some of the cleanest we've seen. That said, this product was easy to use and in-depth documentation was unlikely to be needed for our purposes.
Varonis DatAdvantage assistance costs 20 percent of the purchase price annually. The company keeps it simple by providing one level of support, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., five days a week through email or phone. The contract also includes a software subscription including all updates.Varonis DatAdvantage was, overall, a great product with a full feature set with some of the best ease-of-use in the category. Having Varonis set the product up for us, and explain everything in-depth during the installation process, shows huge dedication to customer support. Varonis was also the most expensive product in the category, but this was not a problem in our eyes because users certainly get what they pay for with DatAdvantage, one of the most extensible data classification frameworks on the market. - Ben Jones