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|Considerations for choosing an information and classification management vendor|
Attaching policies to classified data
Cost pressures and demand for longer, more controlled retention and access to file-system information are forcing companies to look at data classification tools. Products vary in features and performance, but all extract file attributes and content from file systems and store data in repositories for reporting, policy enforcement and data archiving. These tools can be the foundation of many activities, including litigation discovery, cost reduction, record management and retention, archiving and data deduplication. While the tools provide base functionality, an effective solution will include business processes, user education and well-defined policies.
The ICM market is still emerging, and most of the products are in their second release cycle. In selecting products to evaluate, pay close attention to the relationships and integration ICM vendors have established with the vendors in your environment. While this market is currently hot, there are more than a dozen companies with offerings, many of them in the early stages of development. Spend some time gathering your requirements, choose the vendor that best fits those requirements, and carefully investigate its plans for product enhancements and directions (see "Considerations for choosing an information and classification management vendor," at right). The right choice, combined with good policies and business processes, will provide the basis for you to classify, control and manage your unstructured data.
This was first published in November 2006