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Companies need to think through their entire data security strategy which includes attacks on data from inside and outside the organization. Privileged insiders such as database administrators can pose a significant risk to customer and proprietary data if allowed to act unchecked. Â A recent survey show database administrators are more reactive than proactive in regards to monitoring their database(s). Many seem to be driven by compliance mandates, rather than taking a proactive approach to intrusion detection and prevention hence the need of database monitoring.
Database Activity Monitoring (DAM) is defined by Gartner as â€œâ€¦ tools that can be used to support the ability to identify and report on fraudulent, illegal or other undesirable behavior, with minimal impact on user operations and productivity.â€ These tools also help in detecting unusual and unauthorized, internal or external activities while still gauging the effectiveness of security tools and policies in place.
Database activity monitoring tools are implemented as standalone configurations or as software modules loaded on the database servers. The monitoring is accomplished through a combination of several methods, including networkÂ sniffing, reading of databaseÂ audit logsÂ and/or system tables andÂ memoryÂ scraping. Regardless of the methodology chosen, the data must be correlated in order to detect and get a clear view of what’s going on within the database. These tools can help simplify that correlation and provide the administrator with the ability to detect and prevent attacks, provide forensic evidence when a data breach occurs, and ability to reconstruct data or restore it to a previous state. .
Database Activity Monitoring is an extremely valuable tool for compliance and security in our organizations, it is critical to the emerging practice of information-centric security. Database Activity Monitoring gives insight into our most sensitive systems in a non-intrusive way, and can evolve into a proactive security defense and prevent potential breaches. Itâ€™s a tool that can help improve data security and reduce compliance overhead without affecting the business processes.