A unique partnership between FireLayers (a CASB solution provider) and Image Analyzer (a world leader in visual data classification) for the first time offers organizations the means to scan images and identify videos which contain nudity, pornography, terrorism, extreme violence, weapons and other non-work related content and ensure it is managed and where necessary block it from entering the corporate networks.
With the proliferation of commercial cloud applications and storage services (such as Box, Dropbox, Google Drive and more) organizations find themselves constantly battling the huge chunks of data their employees move and store on corporate networks. While textual files can be analyzed and verified to meet company regulations, visual data (such as images and movies) pose several unique challenges to the organization.
To begin with, storage is expensive, and storing non business-related data (personal non-work related files stored by employees) costs a typical midsize company with 500 Terabytes of data some 1.5 million US$ a year. Needless to say, because of their inherent file size, images and videos represent the bulk of data stored.
The second challenge is compliance and liability. Since most of the data is unclassified and unverified, it can (and often does) contain images and videos which are best left for private use. And while there’s nothing harmful in storing private images from an employee’s latest beach vacation, such data can also contain private images, child- pornography and other grotesque visuals.
If the offender accesses illegal data which is stored on the corporate network it puts the enterprise at risk of prosecution and legal liability.
Organizations recognize the issue and have begun to deploy technologies and procedures to mitigate these risks. Organizations utilizing commercial cloud applications opt for a Cloud Application Security Broker (or CASB) solution which uses a set of rules to determine who can save which data and where. But most technologies that can help with data classification are not relevant when it comes to images and videos.
Yair Grindlinger, FireLayers CEO says:
‘We welcome the cooperation with Image Analyzer and see it as a real enhancement of our proven cloud application security platform. Until today we were able to dictate which user does what in terms of permissions, now we can better monitor the data itself. By doing so we can block and alert regarding illicit activities, be it gun, porn or drug related, thus elevating our preventative capabilities to new heights.’
Crispin Pikes, CEO at Image Analyzer said:
‘We recognized early on that the new CASB market would be a significant environment for deployment of Image Analyzer technology. Our new version V7.0 iaViS can identify non-work related visual content in numerous ‘threat categories’ but to deploy optimally we needed the correct partner and platform.
From our research of the CASB market FireLayers stood out as an innovative and highly dynamic player and we are very excited by our partnership and the prospect of the benefits it can deliver to their Enterprise customers.’
FireLayers enables responsible cloud adoption, delivering the security, compliance and governance organizations can rely on to safely enable any user, to use any device to access any cloud application. The FireLayers Cloud Application Security Gateway is the industry’s first platform capable of providing organizations full control over all the homegrown and popular cloud apps, such as Salesforce, Office 365, NetSuite, SuccessFactors, and many others, they use to drive their business. With FireLayers, organizations have the security, visibility and control they need to make the move to the cloud and maximize the value of their cloud applications.
About Image Analyzer
Founded in 2005, Image Analyzer is the market leading provider of image recognition technologies to software vendors worldwide. Their Visual Intelligence Solution (ViS) can analyse images and videos to identify visual elements that match certain ‘threat categories’ like pornography or graphic violence. These types of non-work related imagery can degrade company culture, damage brand reputation and contribute to the creation of a hostile working environment. Image Analyzer provides ViS on an OEM basis to software vendors and service providers across a broad range of market sectors.
The company is based in the UK, privately funded and holds patents related to the scanning of streaming media.