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You too can store data like the NSA

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The stories keep coming about the National Security Agency gathering digital metadata on a massive scale, focusing most Americans on the balancing act between privacy and national security. Agency IT leaders, however, could be forgiven for also asking, "How do they organize all that data?"

As luck would have it, NSA Technical Director Neal Ziring went into some detail on that very question in a recent webinar.

In a May 30 presentation produced by 1105 Government Events (which is owned by the same parent company as FCW), Ziring outlined the NSA's approach to data security. "We are well past the model where you say 'everyone who can log on on this computer can gain access to all the data, all the information that's stored on that computer or on that cloud or in that data center,'" he said. "We need to think about controlling that more tightly."

Ziring said the agency's "smart data" approach improves access for authorized users, provides better control over access by "non-person entities," supports analytics across multiple repositories, and helps to spot "anomalies and abuse." The NSA's strategy and architecture -- which stresses data provenance and careful tagging, he said, can apply to "a lot of other government organizations, in industry and in academia as well."

The full webinar is available for online viewing (free registration required) on the FOSE website.

Posted by Troy K. Schneider on Jun 13, 2013 at 12:10 PM


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