Data classification is critical when managing a secure storage infrastructure. Take a deep dive into the different data types your organization handles. Identify what your data is used for, who needs access to it, how much control is required and the amount of monitoring that is manageable for all important aspects. It will be a lot easier to identify potential issues or gaps in your system through this methodology of data evaluation and classification. For instance, since you want to focus your resources on analyzing only critical data and the use thereof; applying a data loss prevention mechanism to non-confidential or public data is wasteful and produces a cumbersome scope of focus which may result in missed alerts when actual data theft scenarios occur.3. Utilize automation as a powerful tool The average organization today has over 1,400 cloud applications in use, which is concerning from a data governance standpoint – especially when you consider the threats that shadow IT presents. If your employees are using unapproved devices and applications in the business, this leaves your IT infrastructure (both cloud and on-premises systems) and data far more vulnerable to cyberattacks. Worse, it also allows employees to access rogue applications and export data whenever and wherever they please, even after they exit the organization. Employees engage in shadow IT activities because they want to accomplish their business objectives in the most efficient way possible or because they consider company rules to be onerous or cumbersome. But the lack of visibility shadow IT presents to internal IT departments is a serious security risk, especially as employees exit the company.As stated, policies and technology controls can restrict or provide visibility into employee activity Shadow IT can’t be monitored or controlled as easily as company-sanctioned equipment, however. The good news is that you can prevent some types of data loss through the implementation of automation capabilities, such as those which maneuver data into appropriate locations or silos (such as archives or highly secured systems) or restrict access from unauthorized devices. SEE: Cybersecurity in an IoT and mobile world (free PDF) (ZDNet/TechRepublic special feature)By eliminating the manual component of moving certain types of data, you will have a better control over data movement from point to point as well as heightened understanding of when an unauthorized movement is made. It is recommended that organizations automate data transfer processes to not only help meet service level agreements (SLAs), but ensure greater accuracy among critical business processes, while also saving a great deal of time in comparison to manual processes.It’s also important to continuously verify full operational visibility, control and governance over your entire company’s data exchange environment. There is no “set it and forget it” when it comes to successful governance operations.