IT departments have long been aware of the technical and business issues relating to Personal Storage Tables (backup files for old emails and other items). Invariably, apathy has led to their proliferation throughout the organisation.
With the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and the recent Data Protection Bill, there are now much stricter legal requirements for companies to secure and find all personal data wherever it is located. This could be a game changer for those with PST files and is now providing the impetus to address the issue.
GDPR’s new ‘Right to Erasure’ or ‘Right of Access’ require organisations to find personal information across their data estate and respond to requests in just 30 days. Businesses should consider their ability to respond and comply with this or risk incurring the wrath of the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) which now has enhanced enforcement authority.
A typical first-step is for businesses to understand the data they are storing. The next step is to take control of that data. Dark Data – the information businesses store yet have little or no visibility of – represents a material risk. How can a business start to comply if it doesn’t know what it is storing and where personal data might reside?
With email data being a common cauldron for personal information, the need to control and/or eradicate PST files has increased significantly in importance.
With PST files frequently distributed across an organisation, often stored on employees’ desktops or laptops, getting to grips with them can be a challenge. The good news is that help is at hand. What used to be a complex, near impossible task to ‘discover’ PST files and take control of their contents can now be simplified through a combination of specialist tools and technical solutions.
Although finding and taking control of PST files is now easier than ever before, complexities will always exist, but with further improvements on the horizon and with the new GDPR regulations in place, we can no longer ignore the elephant in the room