Effective data governance requires understanding your data so you can apply the right usage policies, the right access controls, and the right retention strategies. The onslaught of data accumulation most businesses face these days, including an increasing quantity of unstructured data, has made this extremely challenging.  It’s impossible to spend hours reviewing every file and tracking down all the versions on various backup media.

As a result, instead of having well informed plans for that data, companies default to backing it up and keeping indefinitely, just in case it becomes necessary sometime in the infinite future. That approach minimizes the risk of legal and regulatory problems, but adds costs for storage space, management, and support.

If you use NetBackup, those backups can become the foundation of a review process that lets you craft data governance policies that match the data you have. Using Veritas Information Map, the metadata collected while performing backups becomes the basis for data analysis. Veritas Information Map lets users easily visualize and filter the unstructured data, supporting decisions about how to manage it and whether to retain it.

The Backup Process Knows More About Your Files Than You Do

Because an effective backup process looks at every file system, the backup process knows about every file, including when it was created and when it was last changed. Information Map uses NetBackup’s knowledge of your file systems and virtual machines to understand your primary data. It has a detailed inventory of files that makes it easy to identify data that’s old or of any particular type.

Explore Your Data and Improve Decision Making

Along with the ability to identify files by selection based on the metadata, Information Map makes it easy to explore data viewing it graphically. Files can be shown geographically, by user, or by other details, again supporting you in understanding how your data is being accessed.

With the insight you gain from viewing your data in this way, you can make smarter decisions about data that’s at risk and needs better protection, and data that’s unnecessary and can be deleted. You’ll be able to quickly identify business data, as well as non-business related data, like photos and music, your employees may be storing.

You save money because it’s quicker to identify data that’s required to satisfy a legal process; you save money because you can free up space that can be used for other data or decommission servers that aren’t active;  and you save money because you can increase or reduce the frequency of backups (and the need to monitor them) based on the sensitivity of the data.

Veritas Information Map and NetBackup are just two of the tools you can use to understand your data to improve data governance and data management. dcVAST supports the full line of Veritas software, with services that include managed NetBackup to ensure your data is efficiently backed up and easily recoverable. Contact us to learn more about how Veritas Information Map can help you understand your data so you can properly protect it.