Sensitive Data Discovery Tools

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Rubrik is cloud data management and enterprise backup software provided by Palo Alto-based Rubrik, Inc. It is a software platform that provides backup, instant recovery, archival, search, analytics, compliance, and copy data management in one secure fabric across data centers and…

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Rubrik is cloud data management and enterprise backup software provided by Palo Alto-based Rubrik, Inc. It is a software platform that provides backup, instant recovery, archival, search, analytics, compliance, and copy data management in one secure fabric across data centers and…


Cohesity is a leader in AI-powered data security and management. Cohesity protects the world’s most critical data workloads across on-prem, cloud-native, and SaaS with backup and recovery, threat intelligence, cyber vaulting, files and objects, and recovery orchestration.

GitGuardian Internal Monitoring

GitGuardian Internal Monitoring helps organizations detect and fix vulnerabilities in source code at every step of the software development lifecycle. With GitGuardian’s policy engine, security teams can monitor and enforce rules across their VCS, DevOps tools, and infrastructure-…

Netwrix Auditor

Netwrix Auditor is designed to enable auditing of the broadest variety of IT systems, including Active Directory, Exchange, file servers, SharePoint, SQL Server, VMware and Windows Server. It also supports monitoring of privileged user activity in all other systems. According to…


BetterCloud aims to eliminate up to 78% of SaaS management work by automating user lifecycle processes and day-to-day operations.

Varonis Data Security Platform

Varonis offers their Data Security Platform, a modular suite of data acess and data security products providing sensitive data discovery, data access governance, unusual behavior detection, GDPR compliance support, as well as incident playbooks and cybersecurity forensic reporting.…

OneTrust Privacy and Data Governance Cloud

The OneTrust Privacy and Data Governance Cloud provides privacy and data governance automation to help organizations better understand their data across the business, meet regulatory requirements, and operationalize risk mitigation to provide transparency and choice to individuals.…

Digital Guardian

The Digital Guardian Platform from Fortra (formerly HelpSystems, acquired in late 2021) is a cloud-delivered data protection platform purpose-built to stop data loss by both insiders and outsiders on Windows, Mac and Linux operating systems. Additionally, Digital Guardian User Activity…


ClearDATA is a HIPAA-compliant, cloud computing platform designed for healthcare organizations wishing to move their computing resources online. The platform is somewhat different to major PaaS/IaaS vendors in that its data centers don’t use commodity hardware and it isn’t multi-…


Osano is a data privacy platform that helps organizations build, manage, and scale their privacy programs. The platform provides a solution for consent, data subject rights, assessments, and vendor risk management, helping organizations stay compliant and increase trust with their…

Oracle Data Masking and Subsetting

Oracle Data Masking and Subsetting is designed to help database customers improve security, accelerate compliance, and reduce IT costs by sanitizing copies of production data for testing, development, and other activities and by discarding unnecessary data.

ManageEngine DataSecurity Plus

ManageEngine's DataSecurity Plus is a software solution to help users find, analyze, and track sensitive personal data—also known as PII/ePHI— residing in Windows file servers and failover clusters.

Absolute Resilience

Absolute Relience provides protection and self-healing to mission critical applications on remote endpoints, allowing them to heal and re-install themselves if they are removed or tampered with. It can also be used to scan endpoints for sensitive data like financial information, social…


TrustArc headquartered in San Francisco offers their eponymous data privacy management platform, providing risk assessments, breach management, compliance reporting, among other features.


BigID in New York offers a data intelligence platform that helps organizations proactively discover, manage, protect, and get more value from their regulated, sensitive, personal, and critical data across their data landscape. BigID Helps Organizations Find, Inventory, Map and Correlate…

Microsoft Purview Information Protection

Microsoft Purview Information Protection (formerly Azure Information Protection) is a solution designed to enable users to better protect sensitive information. With it, users can control and secure email, documents, and sensitive data shared outside a company. From classification…

Orca Cloud Security Platform

Orca's Cloud Security Platform is an agentless cloud-native security and compliance platform that allows users to gain complete visibility and coverage into their existing AWS, Azure, and GCP setups. Orca's platform features four main components which are: SideScanning Technology,…

Safetica Data Loss Prevention

Safetica Data Loss Prevention application, supports enterprise and BYOD environments from leaking sensitive data. Safetica NXT keeps sensitive data out of the wrong hands by detecting security risks and preventing incidents from day one. Safetica ONE protects data and supports operational…

NetApp BlueXP

NetApp BlueXP Classification (formerly NetApp Cloud Data Sense) uses artificial intelligence-driven technology to provide data governance across the entire data estate. Users can pinpoint cost-savings, identify compliance and privacy concerns, and find optimization opportunities.

Solix Enterprise Data Management Suite (Solix EDMS)

Solix Enterprise Data Management Suite (Solix EDMS) is an information lifecycle management solution, from Solix Technologies in Santa Clara. Solix helps infrastructure and operations leaders implement the right policies, processes, and technology for application decommissioning and…

Mage Data Platform

The Mage Data Platform (formerly MENTIS) aims to enable data security while equipping users with the tools to respond to compliance-related requests like the Right to Know and Right to Erasure in a swift and efficient manner. Users can Discover, Protect, and Monitor enterprise sensitive…

Mage Sensitive Data Discovery

Mage Sensitive Data Discovery (formerly Mentis iDiscover) enables users to uncover location hidden sensitive data within the enterprise through Mage’ Sensitive Data Discovery module. With it, users can find data hidden in all types of data stores in the most obscure locations, be…

CipherTrust Data Security Platform

Thales' CipherTrust Data Security Platform (replacing the former Vormetric Data Security Platform) aims to remove complexity from data security, accelerate time to compliance, and secure cloud migrations. The platform is built on a modern micro-services architecture, is designed…

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Nightfall AI and Nightfall DLP solutions, from Shoreline Labs (or Nightfall) in San Francisco, is a sensitive data discovery and exfiltration prevention solution that uses machine learning to identify business-critical data, like customer PII, across SaaS, APIs, and data infrastructure,…

Proofpoint Data Discover

Proofpoint Data Discover locates, tracks, and helps secure sensitive data across a wide variety of locations and transmission to prevent internal threats and enforce compliance with regulations and policy.

Learn More About Sensitive Data Discovery Tools

What are Sensitive Data Discovery Tools?

Sensitive data discovery tools identify unknown sources of data within an organization, particularly sources of sensitive data, and classifies the risk associated with each source of data. These tools help organizations maintain data compliance and prevent damage from data breaches or loss, as well as enabling more efficient sensitive data storage. Sensitive data comes with its own classification metrics, based on what kind of demographic, health, and other individual-level data is in question, including consumer data in some cases. This classification allows organizations to better understand and mitigate the risks associated with storing sensitive data.

Sensitive data discovery tools are particularly relevant for large enterprises and orgs that work with lots of sensitive data, such as insurance companies and others that work with their end-users/customer’s sensitive or proprietary data. Managing, and even identifying, sensitive data is especially challenging when there are so many structured and unstructured sources of data, including sensitive data. Sensitive data discovery tools address this concern for enterprises.

Sensitive Data Discovery vs. BI Data Discovery

Sensitive data discovery overlaps in naming with business intelligence-related data discovery processes. However, the functions and associated products are very distinct. Sensitive data discovery focuses on identifying and securing risk associated specifically with sources of sensitive data. In contrast, BI-related data discovery focuses on combining disparate sources of data for collective analysis. Both classes of tools prioritize identifying sources of data within an organization, but for vastly different purposes.

Sensitive Data Discovery Tools Features & Capabilities

Many tools have specialized features and niches, but there are a few core areas that all sensitive data discovery tools should include:

  • Identification of known and unknown data sources

  • Classification of data’s sensitivity, vulnerability, and general risk profile

  • Mapping, visualization, and/or reporting on data sources within organization

Sensitive Data Discovery Tools Comparison

When comparing different sensitive data discovery tools, consider these factors:

  • Remediation tools: Identifying sensitive data is only helpful if the organization knows what to do with that information. What suggestions or proactive actions can each product take to improve the organization’s sensitive data storage and security posture? How well does each tool integrate with other Risk, Governance & Compliance (GRC) tools the organization uses?

  • Classification Process: How customizable, automated, and generally robust is the tagging and classification structure for each product? Ideally, the vendor should be able to identify either a demo or a similar use case and deployment to your organization to demonstrate prior success. Also consider how automated the classification processes are.

  • Ease of Use: In general, how easy to use is each product? How intuitive are its visualization capabilities? Will it require ongoing IT support and maintenance to use, or are most of the processes and alerts automated?

Start a sensitive data discovery tool comparison

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Frequently Asked Questions

What do sensitive data discovery tools do?

Sensitive discovery tools map out and identify all the known and unknown sources of data that could have sensitive data within it. They also classify the data based on sensitivity, vulnerability, and other risk profiles.

What is the difference between data discovery and sensitive data discovery?

“Data discovery” usually refers to a business intelligence practice of centralizing disparate sources of data into one tool that an end-user can then analyze. In contrast, sensitive data discovery is a security and risk management function for the IT department of an organization.

Who uses sensitive data discovery tools?

Sensitive data discovery tools are most often used by large organizations with complex and sprawling IT infrastructures that lead to many different sources of data. Within these organizations, IT specialists normally administer the tool.

What are the benefits of data discovery tools?

Data discovery tools help organizations maintain data compliance and trust with customers. They also mitigate the risk from data breaches or loss.

What is sensitive data?

Sensitive data is often referred to as personally identifiable data, or data that has certain individual markers or demographic information, such as racial or ethnic information. In some cases, consumer information can also qualify as sensitive data.