Product Updates

File Analysis Series: ZL In-Place File Analysis & Management

A product feature exploring ZL Tech’s enterprise solution for in-place file management

This series has broadly addressed how file analysis efforts can reduce risks and find assets hidden in enterprise data. Having laid the theoretical groundwork, we can now explore how file analysis projects, specifically ZL File Analysis & Management, work in practice.

Notably, ZL File Analysis & Management harnesses data in-place—a concept we will cover in more depth in our next series—establishing control over original documents without creating any copies. In-place file management allows organizations to clean up their servers to reduce redundant, outdated, and trivial data [ROT] and improve overall cybersecurity, privacy compliance, and analytics.

Control and manage data in-place

The first step in managing files in-place is systematically differentiating and classifying documents so that users can reliably apply policies. ZL Tech classifies documents by looking at the content and metadata of files, revealing the who, what, and when’s that are crucial in determining a document’s importance. Leveraging that understanding, ZL File Analysis & Management allows users to classify records and apply lifecycles for proactive, continuous data cleanup. For instance, documents can be retained and later deleted based on event-, time-, and metadata-based triggers.

A document’s lifecycle is automatically determined as it is created or entered into the system based on the category it is classified under. Then—typically years later—when the document’s trigger activates, it moves to a review folder where users can purge or extend documents en masse. At which point, for increased defensibility, the user receives a customizable, comprehensive report of what was deleted and what was selected to remain in the system.

Cleanup enterprise repositories and remove ROT

Outside of general, long-term data management strategies, ZL File Analysis & Management provides users the ability to conduct specific endeavors as well—the most popular of which being ROT reduction. Whether your organization is undergoing a merger and acquisition or simply has not yet cleansed its server of ROT, ZL Tech offers a means to investigate the entire corpus of enterprise data to sift out unnecessary files. The majority of ROT cleanup is conducted at the classification phase, marking superfluous documents for deletion. ZL Tech streamlines this process for user convenience by providing a complete view of files, automatically flagging documents for deletion, and housing the review folder within the same platform.

Increase data security with in-place file management

Managing files in-place additionally increases overall enterprise security by identifying weak links in the system. ZL File Analysis & Management uses proprietary advanced analytics to uncover files within servers and file shares that do not possess the proper access and security privileges. Flagged risks will then be reviewed by the user, who can decide either to remediate them from the system or give them additional protections depending on the file’s importance.

In terms of overall enterprise security, ZL Tech also provides a complete audit log of file activity, including when documents are accessed, who accessed them, and where they were accessed. Knowing this information can allow users to identify when files are used, moved, or deleted in large volumes, which is often a sign of purposeful or accidental insider threat. This along with other use cases allow organizations to preventatively stop data breaches before they occur.

Isolate and remediate sensitive information

ZL File Analysis & Management offers an in-place solution to GDPR, CCPA, and HIPAA requirements by leveraging full-text understanding to identify where personal identifying information resides. Specifically, sensitive information is found using a powerful search engine that utilizes complex expressions, such as proximity, wildcard, and Boolean logic to find violations. Once identified users can preview, apply analytics, and take actions on documents. Further, ZL File Analysis & Management samples file sources and personal information patterns to detect high-risk areas, allowing organizations to better protect their data and comply with regulations.

Leverage in-place file management for insights

Moving away from risk prevention into deriving insights from enterprise files, ZL File Analysis & Management provides visualizations into your data for a deeper understanding of your organization and the information it creates. ZL Tech aggregates statistics from metadata and content to provide a window into your organizations that users can interact with, peering into documents at the enterprise, folder, or file level. Moreover, with advanced search capabilities, users can look into any subset of their data and the dashboard will automatically reconfigure. These insights allow you to answer fundamental questions about your organization’s operations, such as who are the top performers and subject matter experts and what are the informal networks that drive your business.

For more information on ZL File Analysis & Management, read the datasheet and brochure. Alternatively, to see the solution in action, read how this top bank leveraged ZL Tech’s solution. Follow the rest of our file analysis series:

  1. File analysis for ROT reduction
  2. File analysis for corporate insights
  3. ZL File Analysis and Management (this post)

A graduate from Kalamazoo College, Martin Hansknecht serves as a marketing associate for ZL Tech. He gets his Midwestern charm from growing up in the mitten of Michigan, his East Coast work ethic from his time spent in NY and D.C., and his European fashion from years living in England, Germany, and Hungary. Now he is looking forward to absorbing that innovative West Coast mindset!