The use of Big Data to drive innovative solutions offers tremendous hope. Combining artificial intelligence, machine learning, and massive amounts of data has potential for many new discoveries. This is true for a variety of sectors , including–and especially–healthcare, finance, utilities and more. But despite these opportunities, notable challenges also exist, most notably those related to data and privacy protections. Cybersecurity policies and legislation governing data and privacy protections require Big Data security solutions. And many new startups and businesses are emerging with possible offerings in this area.
When it comes to data and privacy protections, major obstacles to Big Data security solutions exist. Common strategies require encryption computations of data that must then be decrypted before use. The cost, scale, and potential for data access have shown these to be less than ideal, however. As a result, many organizations hesitate to share data despite the advantages such collaboration might offer. These types of situations are the primary targets for new companies offering innovative data and privacy protections. Such Big Data security solutions are quickly increasing in demand, and likewise, attracting major investments along the way.
“Bringing together AI algorithms and data in ways that preserve privacy and intellectual property is one of the keys to delivering the next generation of digital medicine.” – John Halamka, M.D., President of Mayo Clinic Platform
The Big Data Security Solutions Industry
While the figure has fluctuated annually, last year’s average cybersecurity breach cost roughly $4.2 million. Between public relations, cybersecurity patches, ransomware attacks, and regulatory fines, costs for such a breach can add up quickly. Therefore, it’s not surprising that the demand for data and privacy protections have also increased in recent years. In 2019, companies providing Big Data security solutions totaled $13.7 billion globally. By 2027, this figure is expected to reach 54.2 billion. As more and more enterprises take to the cloud and invoke Big Data strategies, data security solutions are imperative.
The growth of this industry is also affected by the growing regulatory environment. In healthcare, data and privacy protections are mandated by HIPAA regulations. Other common regulatory guidelines, such as GDPR, are also promoting greater interest in Big Data security solutions. In fact, over 100 countries now have some type of laws related to data and privacy protections in place. Not only is it therefore necessary to pursue these solutions to promote greater use of data and collaboration. It’s also needed in an effort to comply with existing rules and operational environments. And all of this is driving significant growth in this sector.
Existing Types of Big Data Security Solutions
Over the course of the last decade, there have been a number of Big Data security solutions offered. However, each have a few disadvantages that make them less than ideal in their approach. Homomorphic encryption is one such solution that allows computations to be performed on encrypted data without decrypting it first. While this is indeed safe in offering data and privacy protections, it’s also resource intensive and hard to scale. Other solutions are referred to as tokenization, masking or hashing. In these instances, sensitive data is turned into non-sensitive data that retains some elements of the original. But these types of solutions can reduce data accuracy, which can lead to different types of problems.
In some sectors, decentralized Big Data security solutions have been offered. For financial services, blockchain is an example of how the integrity of data and privacy protections can be achieved. But blockchain is not great when it comes to sharing data between entities and in collaboration. It is also energy intensive in its use. This is why widespread use of blockchain in healthcare and medical research doesn’t appear to be feasible. A similar approach has been tried with federated learning. In this instance, machine learning is decentralized to individual devices instead of a centralized could server. But this too has issues because risks of breaches and data reconstructions exist.
“TripleBlind is an incredible platform for empowering companies to collaborate on data while preserving privacy, data rights and intellectual property. Particularly important today in the healthcare industry, as the lack of data mobility results in fragmented and non-optimal care.” – Quentin Clark, managing director, General Catalyst
Innovative Businesses in Data and Privacy Protections
Given that existing data and privacy protections all have some limitations, some companies are taking new approaches. Their Big Data security solutions tend to blend aspects of the previously mentioned strategies. In essence, they attempt to leverage the positive attributes of some against some of the disadvantages. Those finding success are getting attention from venture capitalists and from specific industries. The medical research industries are quite interested in such solutions given the strict regulatory environments in which they operate. Such solutions could greatly enhance researcher collaboration and lead to major healthcare breakthroughs.
One such innovative company is TripleBlind. Based in Kansas City, Missouri, TripleBlind provides unique Big Data security solutions. In essence, its their product allows entities to share encrypted data that never has to be decrypted. The data also never has to leave the confines of its owner’s firewall. In addition, this approach complies with all regulations related to data and privacy protections. As a result, the company has already received over $32 million in funding for development. And one of its largest investors is the Mayo Clinic.
An Untapped Potential Waiting for Innovation
By some experts’ estimates, there is a grand total of 43 zettabytes of enterprise data that is stored and ineffectively used. The reason for this involves the risks related to data and privacy protections and concerns about regulatory compliance. However, better Big Data security solutions can pave the way for this data to be shared. This would enable significant expansions in collaboration among various entities in numerous sectors. This is why there are many companies are hoping to develop such solutions for the industries of tomorrow. And it’s why the growth of the Big Data security sector approaches 19 percent annually. At least for the foreseeable future, the business of data and privacy protections looks to be a solid one.