What is file analysis?
File analysis is the process of scanning, reporting on, and addressing file security and storage across an organization's file repositories. File security analysis deals with inspecting the location, ownership, and permission hygiene of files. File storage analysis involves detecting structured and unstructured data, as well as storage capacity planning, which has become increasingly relevant due to rising dark data concerns. With the right file analysis software, examining both file security and file storage can be performed more effectively.
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Components of file analysis
As established earlier, file analysis is performed to gain security-based and storage-based insights. This demarcation enables organizations to focus on specific goals of file security posture and file storage availability. The components of file analysis can be summed up as below:
|File security analysis||File storage analysis|
|File security deals with identifying overexposed files that grant undue privileges to users and external entities that do not need them. Secondly, it also comprises the sensitive data discovery and classification activities needed to meet the requirements of the GDPR and other data and security mandates.||Managing file stores includes decluttering data stores by identifying and eliminating duplicate and dormant files, as well as files belonging to inactive users. This way, you can get the most out of file stores while securing important data. Know why you need to prioritize data storage management by reading our blog on data glut.|
|Processes and tools involved: Sensitive data discovery, data classification, security permissions analyzer||Processes and tools involved: Disk space analysis, ROT data analysis, duplicate file manager|
Why is file analysis essential to organizations?
The process of file analysis helps you take a deeper look at your file repositories to churn out valuable actionable insights. For example, you may need to verify that the right permissions are granted to the right people. You could gain insight with thorough auditing of your file repositories. Although manually performing file analysis is tedious and time consuming, with a clear-cut process and the right tool you can gain insights quicker and more readily initiate remedial actions. With the right file analysis software you will be able to:
1. Secure sensitive data
Implement sensitive data discovery and classification required to adequately secure the personal information of customers and stakeholders alike.
2. Monitor file permission hygiene
Establish good permission hygiene to prevent unauthorized access to files and ensure that insiders and external entities do not exploit unregulated file permissions. With a file analysis tool, you can locate files with open access, full control, or inconsistent permissions.
3. Organize disk space usage
Use disk space more efficiently by analyzing unstructured data for duplicate files and non-business files (such as employees' personal videos and photos), as well as files of inactive users.
4. Scan for pesky files
Watch out for ransomware-encrypted files and potentially risky executables present in your file stores. It is better to be safe than sorry by only allowing safe and authorized files.
5. Discover file store insights
Pinpoint which files and folders are hidden, empty, or orphaned (files left behind by former employees). Use disk space analysis to identify files that need to be disposed of, as well as files that require better protection.