Semantic Analysis Addresses Data Leak Protection Flaws

23 April 2008
nexTier Networks has announced that it has completed the development of a semantic analysis engine capable of handling the accuracy, scale and performance required for the protection of information in enterprises.

nextTier’s patent-pending algorithms are optimized to identify at network speed, the origin and classification of information in use within the entire enterprise so that proper policies can be applied in real-time, insuring that information handling is in line with corporate policies. Immune to information tampering, the technology will initially be used to address the shortcomings of existing Data Leak Protection (DLP) solutions and will be productized to complement existing deployments as well as provide complete solutions.

nexTier’s technology can discover with extreme accuracy where a specific piece of information came from, for example from which document, database, email, and so forth, even if that information was modified or retyped in a different context. The technology has proven to be greatly resistant to evasion techniques, and it enables the transparent enforcement of security policies that control where information can go and with whom it can be shared – even across multiple enterprises.

The algorithms underlying the core technology are also language-independent and can, for example, process at the same time and with equal accuracy English, French, Arabic, and Asian content.

"For too long IT professionals have been promised true security for their most sensitive information, only to be disappointed by technologies that are fairly easily circumvented," said nexTier Networks’ Founder and CTO Tarique Mustafa. “We have combined complex semantic intelligence with unique security algorithms to produce the first disruptive data leak protection technology to enter the security space in a long time. Our approach uses patent-pending algorithms to solve real-world information security problems that have long proved intractable because of the cost, scale, speed, and/or accuracy limitations of other solutions.”

The Company’s Security-Semantic CORelation and indEXxing (S2 COREX™) algorithms can discover, classify, and index information in real-time within a security context using breakthrough methods that overcome the accuracy, scale and speed limitations of traditional Latent Semantic Indexing (LSI) and other similar algorithms.

In addition, to specifically protect content identified as security critical, nexTier developed new algorithms to extract, or “sequence,” just enough information – the equivalent of a human’s DNA in concept but using less than 1000 Bytes – to always accurately identify any information that came from those documents. This unique “Semantic DNA Sequence™” can be used to identify where information came from even if such information was extensively modified or repurposed by someone either accidentally or maliciously. As such, the technology exhibits a remarkable immunity to content modification.

"Today’s data security products are hamstrung by their dependency on traditional non-semantic techniques that are inherently susceptible to evasion and which carry high administrative costs due to their large storage capacity needs,” said Bernard Harguindeguy, veteran executive of the information security industry at such companies as Greenborder (acquired by Google), Sygate (acquired by Symantec), and WorldTalk (acquired by Tumbleweed). “nexTier’s unique Semantic-DNA Sequencing™ technology and S2 COREX™ semantically-aware security algorithms can be used transparently and automatically deep inside the enterprise network to very effectively track and protect information.”

“By adding real-time semantic intelligence to data security, nexTier is changing the rules for what enterprise customers should expect,” said Matt Ocko, a seasoned Silicon Valley Venture Capitalist and member of nexTier Networks’ Board of Directors. “The combination of accuracy, automation, and performance on a very large scale will establish nexTier as a force to be reckoned with in the fast-growing security market. The fundamental nature of nexTier’s underlying Semantic-DNA™ technology not only enables better information security for businesses, but its core innovation will also impact many related technology areas over the next few years.”

nexTier Networks will begin shipping their information security technology and product in early Q3 of 2008.

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