Data is the lifeline of every organization. In connection with this, managing and securing it is critical and challenging for organizations. This task will become even more challenging with time as the sheer volume of daily data keeps increasing. And when data accuracy, quality, storage, and security are affected, it results in poor decision making, data breaching, and non-compliance issues. The higher the amount of unstructured data an organization collects, more are the chances of risk.

Data with errors leads to workplace inefficiencies, hampers the decision-making process, yields unnecessary costs and may also land organizations in legal compliance risk. This is why businesses need to be vigilant about the type of data they are collecting. Storing data without consent or legitimate business purposes can even land an organization in GDPR compliance issues.

This is where data remediation comes in. The data remediation process helps businesses clean up, organize, and migrate their data to a secure and clean environment. It also helps businesses improve compliance by eliminating duplicate data or unnecessary and unused data. Data remediation can, thus, be defined as a critical tool to sanitize data management and ensure data network security within an organization.

What is data remediation?

The data remediation process is all about correcting errors and mistakes in data to eliminate data quality issues. This is done via a process involving cleaning, organizing, and migrating data to a secured and safe environment to achieve business goals. Data remediation helps organizations decide whether they should keep, delete, migrate, or archive information.

When the need for data remediation?

Preferably, data remediation must become an ongoing business process to ensure organizations get quality data while protecting it against risks, too. Data remediation must be considered in the following situations –

  • Business changes – Any logistical changes within the business processes, digital or physical, can land your data at risk. Digital changes to software or systems and physical location changes can leave data in a vulnerable state. Also, any changes to an organization’s leadership will warrant a discussion on data remediation.
  • Mergers and acquisitions – It is essential to check and track any new data coming in from other or unknown sources in the event of merger and acquisition.
  • Iterations in laws and regulationsData privacy and protection laws change continuiously. Organizations must remain alert about any changes to the legal environment and remediate data to ensure compliance.
  • Human error – Human errors in data management and governance are very much discoverable. Data remediation becomes essential to ensure data quality and security in such situations.

How does data remediation benefits business?

Performing the data remediation method includes lots of efforts, but is beneficial for businesses across sectors. The following are some of the top benefits most organizations experience after implementing data remediation.

  • Data storage cost decreases – Although data remediation is not just about data deletion, it is a typical remediation action, and less data implies less storage. Moreover, many organizations realize that they have bundled trivial information in the same high-security storage platform for sensitive information rather than merely paying for the storage capacity that is truly required.
  • Protecting unstructured sensitive data— After identifying and classifying sensitive data, remediation is performed where one can determine and execute the actions that mitigate risk. This may look like one is finding a secure storage space for sensitive data or deleting what is necessary from a compliance point of view.
  • Reduced sensitive data footprint – By eliminating sensitive data that falls beyond its recommended retention period and one that’s is essential for compliance, organizations can reduce sensitive data footprint and decrease the risk of potential data breaches or leaks of highly sensitive data.
  • Stick to compliance laws and regulations – Keeping data that’s beyond its recommended retention period can land organizations at greater risk. Organizations can reduce data exposure by supporting compliance initiative that cleans up data.
  • Increase in staff productivity— Data used by teams should be readily available, usable, and trustworthy. Streamlining your organization’s network with data remediation makes it easier to find and use the information for its intended purpose.
  • Reduces cyberattacks risks – Continuously engaging in data remediation processes helps organizations proactively minimize data loss risks and potential financial or reputational damage of successful cyberattacks.
  • Improves overall data security – Data remediation and data governance work closely. It is essential to formulate data governance policies if an organization wants to remediate data properly. This is essential for the overall management and protection of an organization’s data.

Role of data remediation in data privacy and security

Maintaining the quality of data is one of the biggest challenges faced by businesses today. Various data management challenges encountered by organizations include the constantly changing face of data and iterative data models, inaccurate or corrupt data, and new and emerging data protection regulations. Poor data quality lowers the business’s operational efficiency and impacts effective decision-making.

Data remediation plays an important role in data security and compliance with privacy policies – poor data quality results from the lack of appropriate data sanitization processes. In the absence of necessary data management and data security protocols, the chances are high that data within an organization will fall prey to common data health issues such as corruption and inaccuracies.

Suffering from unregulated data, businesses suffer and have to face data breaches, too. Also, poor data management lowers the business or organization’s ability to ensure compliance with data privacy protection laws, thus leading to penalties.

Hence, organizations need to take severe steps to ensure their data is clean, secure, enriched, and adhere to privacy policies. Migrating data to a safe and clean environment is also an essential step to secure an organization’s data. Data remediation meets each of these purposes.

With time, unregularized data can overburden the data network of a business or the organization. Unregularized data also adds to the risk of data breaches. All these factors impact every aspect of data management. Increased risk of unregulated or dirty data can increase the risk of non-compliance hampering data privacy regulations. Businesses that collect and store large amounts of data are more prone to risks.

It is vital for organizations not to ignore data remediation for all these reasons.

After the introduction of data remediation,  businesses benefit in the form of improved data insight and they will be able to build a more accurate, and transparent data ecosystem. Clean, organized, and securely stored data can enhance data security and ensure that the organization’s data comply with privacy standards and other mandatory legal responsibilities.