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Case Study

Informatica: Providing its customers the gold standard in Master Data Management with Cyral

Informatica is an Enterprise Cloud Data Management leader.  Their mission is to bring data to life by empowering businesses to realize the transformative power of their most critical assets.

They have created a new category of software, the Informatica Intelligent Data Management Cloud™ (IDMC). IDMC is an end-to-end data management platform powered by CLAIRE® AI, that connects, manages and unifies data across any multi-cloud or hybrid system, democratizing data and enabling enterprises to modernize and advance their business strategies.

With customers in more than 100 countries, including 85 of the Fortune 100, Informatica has more than $1.5 billion in annual recurring revenue and conducts 61 trillion cloud transactions per month.  About 33% of their revenue comes from cloud subscriptions

The Need for a Data Security Governance (DSG) Solution

The challenge with providing a platform for data management is that both risk and reputation become significant concerns. Therefore, having the capability to monitor and secure all data activity became crucial, as did the need to avoid it from becoming an increasingly complex and largely manual process

Keeping up with the growth of data

Data is the crown jewel for businesses, but especially for Informatica whose customers trust it to manage and harness insights from their most valuable data. The amount of structured data that is being managed by Informatica is exploding, and along with the growth in data comes the need to manage it and make it available for use securely.

Aggressive Goals for the Business:

The following business goals were driving the need for a DSG solution:

  • Reduce the cost of customer acquisition
  • Provide the customer assurances
  • Reducing reputation risk
  • Compliance to NIST SP 800-53

Preserving customer trust

Informatica’s customers put a very high level of trust in Informatica’s cloud infrastructure to process customer data.  As such, customers want guarantees that their data is secure and safe from loss and damage. This necessitated Informatica to be able to provide assurance to their customers about the safety of their product and processes.

As a data management company offering a Master Data Management service, the stakes are very high. Master data is the golden truth for an enterprise, therefore securing data while also allowing it to be accessed by an increasing number of people in various job functions was a top company priority.

Pathik Patel, Head of Cloud Security at Informatica

Making data available to customer agents

Agents of Informatica’s customers need to be able to access their organization’s data for validation and design. This creates the need for providing them with that access and administering the right privileges. Handling it at the scale of Informatica requires tooling to grant, govern and revoke that access using policy automation.

Minimizing the risk of a data breach

Attacks are increasingly sophisticated. The sheer amount and complexity of the data involved was causing increasing vulnerability. To deal with these security and audibility issues, they needed to:

  • Identify vulnerabilities faster.
  • Create solutions and recommendations faster.
  • Automate as much of the process as possible.
  • Do it in a way that meets complex global regulatory and audit requirements. 

Large number of regulatory and compliance standards

Informatica is a global company serving Fortune 500 customers from various industries. Because of this broad set of customers spread across a global footprint, they must adhere to many different regulations and compliance requirements.  Informatica is SOC 2, SOC 3, HIPAA, GDPR, FedRAMP, TX-RAMP, Canadian PIPEDA, Australian IRAP compliant/certified. All these standards mandate the need for various data security controls.

It’s a year-round process for us to keep compliance controls compliant.

Pathik Patel, Head of Cloud Security at Informatica

Understanding the aggressive goals for the business and the resulting technical challenges, Informatica decided to invest in a data security governance solution to provide its customers with the gold standard of security in its Master Data Management solution.

  • Risk Mitigation: By adopting Data Security Governance, organizations can identify potential security, privacy, and compliance risks associated with their data assets, and mitigate them.
  • Business Continuity:  Effective data security governance ensures data remains available and accessible to authorized users, avoiding downtime caused by system or platform failures.
  • Regulatory Compliance: Data Security Governance helps organizations adhere to relevant data protection and compliance regulations, and comply with data sovereignty requirements, thereby avoiding fines and reputational damage.
  • Data Privacy Protection: The framework established by Data Security Governance includes privacy policies and controls that safeguard sensitive data, ensuring it is used appropriately and individual privacy rights are respected.
  • Safeguarding Mission-Critical Assets: With data proliferation, protecting crown jewel datasets is paramount. Data Security Governance helps prevent unauthorized access and theft of critical business information.

A DSG platform like no other

Informatica selected Cyral as their DSG platform because of its ability to handle their business and technical requirements and allowing them to automate security processes, all from one platform and without changing the location of data or their current management workflows. Cyral provided several first-in-the-market benefits to Informatica so that they could in turn provide better services to their own customers.

Identity federation

One of the biggest challenges Informatica anticipated was providing data store access to customer agents.  This was complex because they didn’t know the customer identity, so they were concerned about how to provide access and monitor customer activity without a bunch of bolt-on, cumbersome tools creating friction.  With Cyral, they were able to implement a workflow where they could process the customer identity and, based on the unique customer identity, grant access, track usage, ensure data security and deliver the reporting necessary to prove regulatory compliance.

 With Cyral we can easily federate the identity of data consumers, including shadow users, to the company’s central IAM services.

Pathik Patel, the Head of Cloud Security at Informatica

Ability to detect and respond

With the constant increase in data volume, it becomes time consuming to administer access to various stakeholders while balancing security with speed. Cyral’s platform unifies access controls for users and applications, enables fine-grained authorization policies and provides complete monitoring and reporting.

 With Cyral, I can rest a bit easier because the platform monitors all data and makes it easy to manage who has access to what.

Pathik Patel, the Head of Cloud Security at Informatica

Designed for scale and low latency

From a security engineering perspective, it was imperative to invest in a solution that could be deployed into a production environment as large and complex as Informatica’s. It required the tool to be designed with the challenges of scale and low latency in mind.

 “Cyral’s founders have a good understanding of what it takes to be deployed into a production environment monitoring production traffic,” says Patel. “Cyral’s platform has minimal impact on latency, even at our scale, ensuring the accuracy of the data.” 

Enable data security as code

Before finding Cyral, Informatica had been anticipating a long, drawn-out implementation due to the bolt-on, manually managed, cumbersome tools available.  Instead, the implementation with Cyral went quickly and smoothly due to how Cyral enables API, CI/CD integrations and GitHub-based management infrastructure as code.

 Cyral’s data security as code approach made security automation and integrating with our security response team quite easy.

Pathik Patel, the Head of Cloud Security at Informatica

Easy to implement

Cyral was deployed against Informatica’s existing data stores without changing the underlying technology. 

Cyral was easy to integrate, not only from a technical perspective but also from a business process perspective.

Pathik Patel, the Head of Cloud Security at Informatica

Redwood City, US
6,000+ employees