A Unique Approach to Data Governance

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Albert Einstein once said that if he had an hour to solve a problem, he’d spend 55 minutes thinking about the problem and five minutes thinking about the solution. Borrowing from the master, I’d suggest that if I had an hour to solve some data governance or data security task, I’d spend 55 minutes curating the data and five minutes on the solution.

This seems like an appropriate way to introduce a start-up company called Cinchy that our TAG Cyber analysts spent some time with this past week. The Cinchy team focuses on a new concept called dataware that appears to have strong relevance for data governance, data science, and data security teams. Let me share what we learned:

The observation by the Cinchy founders, led by Dan Demers, former RBC and Citibank executive, is that valuable enterprise data can be liberated from the underlying siloed implementation. What results is a new data layer that allows for powerful and effective leveraging for 360 views, improved resilience, and yes – better security.

The Cinchy Dataware Platform involves data management tools that provide visibility into data connections and dependencies across premise, cloud applications, and systems. A multi-domain hub simplifies app-to-app data integration, and the centralized view of the data supports direct control and support for user self-service through a novel data browser.

One component of the solution is the familiar process of extract, transform, and load (ETL), which is all about integrating data from various sources into a common framework for analysis. Companies like IBM have good solutions in this area – and based on what we saw, the Cinchy solution addresses common ETL needs in enterprise.

From a cybersecurity perspective, the Cinchy dataware solution enables federated governance across the data with the ability to write fine-grained policies. Enterprise teams can use the Cinchy platform to make sure that role and attribute-based controls are being properly applied and enforced – which is especially helpful for compliance.

One feature that stood out to the TAG Cyber team during our demo was the intense focus the Cinchy team has placed on creating stunning visual displays. When you sit for a demo with this team, you’ll have to focus hard on the discussion versus just gaping at the beautiful visuals being shown. Cinchy users must give great demos to executives and board members.

From an industry analyst perspective, the idea of creating a separate data layer, this notion of dataware, seems like a good idea. Anything that simplifies how data is collected, curated, organized, and stored will help with governance, but will also play a key role in establishing superior data security controls.

So, if you agree with Professor Einstein’s recommend time proportion when solving problems, including our modest extrapolation to security, then you’ll likely agree with the approach being taken by Cinchy. Give them a call – and even if the approach does not connect with your plans.

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