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July 26, 2023
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 min read

What is Cloud Data Loss Prevention (DLP) ?

Discover the benefits, key features, best practices and how to choose the right Cloud DLP solution in our Cloud Data Loss Prevention (DLP) guide 2024.

What is Cloud Data Loss Prevention (DLP) ?
Calendar Icon White
July 26, 2023
Clock Icon
 min read

What is Cloud Data Loss Prevention (DLP) ?

Discover the benefits, key features, best practices and how to choose the right Cloud DLP solution in our Cloud Data Loss Prevention (DLP) guide 2024.


Cloud DLP is a cutting-edge technology that ensures the security of sensitive information throughout its lifecycle in the cloud. Cloud DLP solutions offer various benefits to organizations, including:

  • Prevents data breaches and secures endpoints
  • Data classification
  • Data visibility
  • Prevent Shadow IT
  • Continuous monitoring
  • Secure data seamlessly

Cloud based DLP solution offer key features such as content and context awareness, timely alerts, machine learning (ML) insights and automation. 

Cloud DLP Best practices to enhance security

  • Sensitive data discovery
  • Build a data inventory 
  • Prioritize data management 
  • Define user groups 
  • Follow zero-trust encryption policies
  • Actively monitor user behavior

The 2022 Thales Global Cloud Security Study reported 45% of organizations had suffered a cloud-based data breach in the last 12 months. With the growing reliance on cloud-based storage and collaboration tools, organizations need a robust solution to prevent accidental data leaks and unauthorized access

That's where Cloud DLP comes into the picture. 

Cloud Data Loss Prevention or Cloud DLP, is a cutting-edge technology that ensures your sensitive information remains secure throughout its lifecycle in the cloud. It protects data against breaches by employing advanced techniques. Hence, the global Cloud DLP market is expected to reach $27.5 billion by 2031 for the right reasons. 

This article addresses cloud DLP's significance, benefits, and best practices. Stay tuned!

What is Cloud Data Loss Prevention (DLP)?

Data loss prevention (DLP) is a technique to minimize the possibility of data theft or unauthorized disclosure by securing sensitive data at rest, in transit, and on endpoints. Cloud DLP solutions are designed to safeguard data for organizations implementing diverse cloud storage strategies, ranging from simple private or public cloud to multi-cloud and hybrid ecosystems.

Cloud DLP Components

Want to learn more about DLP?

Give these articles a quick read

Cloud DLP solutions provide essential security measures by encrypting sensitive data before it enters the cloud and ensuring that it is only accessed by authorized cloud applications. 

☑️They can effectively detect potential customer data leaks, intellectual property, and other valuable information.

☑️They address the growing concerns of shadow IT and unauthorized cloud-based solutions by leveraging SSL inspection to analyze network traffic and identify sensitive data within TLS-encrypted traffic

☑️Cloud DLP solutions have data discovery tools with deep scanning capabilities for locating critical information across systems and a data categorization capability.

☑️The system can track and record all user activity while offering the option to implement pre-set or customized security policies for addressing identified threats. 

Benefits of Cloud Data Loss Prevention Solutions

Most companies have turned to cloud-based solutions. However, cloud adoption brings its own challenges and security concerns. That's where cloud data loss prevention can help. Here are some of the benefits that a comprehensive cloud security provides,

  • Prevents data breaches and secures endpoints
  • Data classification
  • Data visibility
  • Prevent Shadow IT
  • Continuous monitoring
  • Secure data seamlessly
Benefits cloud data loss prevention provides

Prevents data breaches and secures endpoints

Cloud infrastructure security can be compromised when components like API endpoints are accessed from unsafe devices. Cloud DLP solutions safeguard your cloud infrastructure by testing and monitoring API endpoints, ensuring restricted access from any device. DLP monitoring feature tracks all data activity, immediately alerting your security team to suspicious behavior. Should anything unusual arise, Cloud DLP solutions can even automatically block suspicious activity to minimize the impact of a potential data breach.

Data classification

Cloud services help you store large volumes of data. But all of your stored data isn't safe. With cloud DLP solutions, you can effectively organize and categorize all your data assets, providing a centralized view. This enhances your ability to manage the data and safeguards it by preventing unauthorized access.

Strac Sensitive Data Classification and Discovery

Data visibility

Cloud DLP tools enable businesses to seamlessly detect the movement of corporate data across authorized and unauthorized cloud-based solutions. With this unparalleled visibility into the cloud, organizations gain essential security insights and a comprehensive understanding of how their data, applications, and cloud infrastructure are utilized.

Prevent Shadow IT

Cloud ecosystems empower employees to work from anywhere, anytime, using any device. While this flexibility can significantly benefit organizations, it also brings about a substantial risk commonly called "shadow IT." 

Shadow IT occurs when employees utilize unauthorized systems and devices to connect, perform tasks, and access information

This introduces potential risks to your network infrastructure and can expose vulnerabilities often unnoticed by your IT staff

With Cloud DLP, you can limit unauthorized access to your cloud infrastructure, ensuring that employees only have access to the resources they are permitted to use. Additionally, companies can restrict general permissions even among team members, providing an extra layer of security.

Continuous monitoring

Continuous scanning and auditing are key features of Cloud DLP, allowing organizations to regularly scan data in cloud storage and perform comprehensive audits on all uploaded files. This helps maintain data integrity and protect against potential risks.

Secure data seamlessly

Cloud DLP solutions are designed to prevent the exfiltration and leakage of sensitive information. These powerful tools offer a range of controls, including server scanning, data identification, and encryption, to ensure the safety of sensitive information when cloud-sharing files. 

With automated enterprise policies, you can easily apply controls like prompt blocking or encryption for sensitive data. Plus, most DLP solutions have built-in alerting capabilities that notify administrators when data is at risk.

Strac offers end-to-end encryption across all document formats, including PDF, JPEG, PNG, DOC, ZIP, and more. With Strac's advanced security measures in place, you can feel confident that your files are fully protected. Plus, you have the power to control who can access your files by choosing how many times a file can be viewed and for how long. Strac takes it a step further by automatically expiring those files for you.

Key features of Cloud DLP Solutions

  • Content and context awareness
  • Timely alerts
  • Reduce false positives
  • Automation

Content and context awareness

A content-aware DLP solution can recognize sequences by looking at crucial phrases and text sequences. It effortlessly identifies the criticality of the information

For example, a content-aware DLP can quickly scan and locate sequences of fixed digits and determine whether they are social security or credit card numbers. But that's not all; with context-aware capabilities, the DLP determines if the string has sensitive information requiring protection.

Gmail Redaction
Email Security solution

Timely alerts

Alerts ensure prompt risk awareness so admins can swiftly mitigate potential damages. One area where alerts are critical is policy violations. DLP notifications inform users when they have violated a policy, providing insights into what happened to their file or communication channel. These notifications also help users learn about secured data handling best practices, potentially decreasing the occurrence of future incidents.

Reduce false positives

Machine learning (ML) technology effectively reduces the occurrence of false positives in cloud data loss prevention (DLP) systems. Furthermore, ML technology improves the tool's ability to identify complex data loss cases while continuously learning and adapting to new scenarios.


Cloud-based DLP solutions provide automation capabilities designed to enhance productivity and streamline operations

With automation, you can set up policies to perform actions such as deleting, quarantining, unsanctioned, and unsharing data, eliminating manual intervention. Moreover, DLP policies can initiate automated responses that help minimize risks until administrators can address them.

Cloud Data Loss Prevention Best Practices

Dan Benjamin , the CEO of Dig Security delves into the concept of Data Security Posture Management (DSPM) in an interview. With DSPM, organizations can automatically discover and classify data assets across different cloud environments. This allows for a profound understanding of owned data and its usage patterns. Dan also introduces Data Detection and Response (DDR) as a vital aspect of cloud data security. DDR aims to identify and respond to malicious events involving data, complementing DSPM's posture management capabilities.

Diagram showing Problem with Cloud Storage

Sensitive data discovery

Companies rely on an average of 100-200 SaaS apps to streamline their operations. With customer data scattered across multiple apps and cloud platforms like AWS, Azure, and GCP, security and compliance leaders face the challenge of gaining visibility into sensitive data. This implies businesses must prioritize applications for safeguarding customer information.

You can save time and streamline your cloud data organization using DLP tools. Categorize all your information, whether it's customer data, employee data, or HR data. Creating a complete inventory of your cloud-based assets allows you to easily access the specific data you need without wasting time searching for it.

Define user groups

Depending on DLP regulations, admins can effectively deploy security measures by creating user groups such as admin users, operators, and end users. With these user groups in place, you can set up firewalls and restrict file sharing based on various access levelsRestricting the sharing of files and emails reduce the likelihood of sensitive data leaking.

Prioritize data management

Establish company-wide policies to categorize data assets based on their value for optimal data management and improve security measures. Use Cloud DLP policies to categorize data into distinct labels such as important, confidential, private, and sensitive. 

With this powerful feature, administrators can effortlessly locate and evaluate batches of data, allowing them to prioritize their tasks more effectively based on the assigned labels. 

Consider redacting personal information from sensitive data before uploading it to the cloud. By categorizing client and employee data as confidential, you can instruct the tool to eliminate private information before uploading it to the cloud, ensuring consistency in data management.

Follow the zero-trust encryption policy

Employ zero-trust encryption for specified data sets to protect confidential information from unauthorized access. This powerful feature prevents spying on your data during transit and scrambles it, ensuring no one can intercept it. With this best practice, you can successfully avoid man-in-the-middle attacks, maintaining the highest degree of security for your critical information.

Actively monitor user behavior

Advanced detection engines like User and Entity Behavior Analytics (UEBA) help monitor user and application behaviors closely. UEBA keeps a close eye on user device and application behavior, identifying any suspicious user activity. Doing so ensures that compromised data remains inaccessible, providing a layer of security for businesses.

How to Choose the Right Cloud DLP solution?

As organizations transition to a zero-trust security model, insight into data movement between on-premises and cloud storage and applications becomes essential. Choose a cloud DLP solution that provides excellent data discovery and visibility to protect sensitive data.

Choosing Cloud DLP Providers When selecting a cloud DLP solution, organizations should be sure it offers the following key features:

  • Content and context-based monitoring
  • Comprehensive scanning, auditing, alerting, prompting, blocking, and remediation capabilities
  • Encrypting critical data before uploading to the cloud
  • Extensive activity tracking and reporting
  • API integration for sensitive data redaction
  • Machine learning model accuracy in detecting false positives
  • Rich integrations with popular SaaS applications
  • Deep integration with all attachment types (pdfs, jpegs, pngs, images, word documents, etc.)
  • Exceptional customer service

Keep your Data Secure with Strac

One of the standout features of Strac is its intelligent redaction experience designed to identify and redact blocks of sensitive customer data across various communication channels, such as PII, PHI, or PCI. 

Whether in private channels, public channels, direct messages (DMs), or group DMs, Strac ensures that important data remains confidential. We take compliance seriously, adhering to GDPR, HIPAA, PCI, CCPA, SOC 2, NIST CSFand NIST 800-53.

With Strac's audit reports, you get full visibility and control over your data, ensuring that no potential risks slip through the cracks. But that's not all! Know what's incredible abut Strac!

Source G2

Strac goes the extra mile by automatically detecting and redacting any sensitive messages and files in your catalog. Rest easy knowing that only authorized users can securely access these masked or removed items in the Strac UI Vault. Prevent data breach effortlessly and keep your confidential data - confidential.

Founder, Strac. ex-Amazon Payments Infrastructure (Widget, API, Security) Builder for 11 years.

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