Why is data encryption gaining importance? How cost-effective are the solutions emerging for enterprises and startups? Rahul Kumar, country head of WinMagic, shared his views on these topics with Jagmeet Singh of OSFY. Here are excerpts from the conversation.
Q Data loss is indeed becoming a business problem. What are the solutions WinMagic offers to save crucial data?
Essentially, data losses result in big problems because all companies have some important data. Companies are doing a lot to try and protect their data but what ends up happening is that they leave behind a gaping hole in the entire system when they don’t consider one-key encryption. What happens if you lose your laptop today? A large amount of your data will be gone, and you don’t know just how difficult it is to acquire the same data back again. Nor do you know who has your information now. There is only one solution to protect your data in such cases. It is to encrypt the device with solutions such as WinMagic. Data encryption solutions limit the instances of data loss and offer a strict security layer on top of users’ personal data.
We use an intelligent key management system with encryption. Certainly, data encryption has become a critical element in the industry. So our prime focus area is to provide our key management system to our customers. This ensures that everything they are doing is on encryption.
Q What is the USP of WinMagic’s intelligent key management system?
The USP of our intelligent key management system is that it offers the best user experience. Experience matters a lot in the world of data encryption as the users themselves need to manage the encryption of their personal data. Thus, we always aim to deliver the best experience to our users.
Q What are your strategies to push Indian customers into deploying data encryption?
Educating the market about deploying data encryption is one of our fundamental charters. We understand that currently, the market has not been penetrated, and that is a critical opportunity for us. Customers are increasingly recognising the value of data and hence the importance of encrypting it. This is the big opportunity that we see in the market.
Q How do you educate the market about data encryption?
We use several ways to educate the market about data encryption. We talk to engineers, conduct webinars and participate in some industry events to make people aware of the need for data encryption. Also, we host our own events and participate in the main partner-generated activities.
Q What is the pricing trend of the available data encryption solutions? With evolving technology, is it going down on a per-user basis?
The pricing trends in the data encryption world are quite simple. Customers are not mainly considering prices while choosing solutions for their requirements. Instead, they opt for solutions by their value. So we can say that value is driving the data encryption market, not price.There is a myth that prices are going down with the evolution in technology. Certainly, technology is evolving and in fact, technology evolves all the time. But at the same time, the prices are not going down proportionate to the evolution in technology.
Q What is the typical pricing model here? Is it on a per-user basis or are there other models also available in the market?
As value based offerings primarily influence the market of data encryption solutions, the pricing model too is typically based on only the value. This refers to the value customers get from the solutions, in terms of the security of their data.
Q Do you have any unique pricing model that distinguishes WinMagic from other data encryption companies?
The beauty of the data encryption market is that no pure-play competition exists among different solution providers. Therefore, WinMagic offers a value-based model as its unique feature.
Q India is yet to implement a strong encryption policy. What’s your take on this as a solutions provider?
Yes, we need a strong and clearly worded encryption policy. One of the key elements missing in policies is that today, organisations don’t have to disclose anything if they lose customers’ data. There should be a policy, which mandates that organisations make a full disclosure if they have lost end users’ data. That would ensure that organisations take the necessary steps to protect their customers’ data.
Q Where does the cloud fit in your plans?
Customers are increasingly moving towards cloud infrastructure to leverage the flexibility that the cloud provides. However, in many cases, the cloud service providers are not responsible for the security of the organisations’ data on the cloud. It is the responsibility of the organisations themselves to protect their data. This is what we enable by encrypting the virtual machines on the cloud – public, private and hybrid.
Q What are the technologies that you are using to encrypt the data stored on the cloud?
We are using the same AES-256 algorithm that is already encrypting data through various solutions across the globe. On the cloud, we are really looking at the access to the cloud system. This relates to how you access anything on the cloud. We encrypt the virtual machine and the instance on the cloud to protect the system.
Q Lastly, what are your views on the future of data encryption?
The adoption of data encryption has already increased significantly. I am quite confident that in the next two or three years, this adoption will move up to new levels. Today, customers increasingly understand the value of their data. This will result in the growth of data encryption in the future.