Amazon Web Services (AWS) has announced the launch of Amazon Macie, a new security service that uses machine learning to help customers prevent data loss by automatically discovering, classifying, and protecting sensitive data in AWS.
Amazon Macie recognises sensitive data such as personally identifiable information (PII) or intellectual property, and provides customers with dashboards and alerts that give visibility into how this data is being accessed or moved.
The fully managed service continuously monitors data access activity for anomalies, and generates detailed alerts when it detects risk of unauthorised access or inadvertent data leaks. Today, it is available to protect data stored in Amazon Simple Storage Service (Amazon S3), with support for additional AWS data stores coming later this year.
Customers can enable Amazon Macie from the AWS Management Console, and pay only for the GBs of Amazon S3 content classified and the AWS CloudTrail events analyzed, with no upfront costs or software purchases required.
“When a customer has a significant amount of content stored in Amazon S3, identifying and classifying all of the potentially sensitive data can feel a bit like finding needles in a very large haystack — especially with monitoring tools that aren’t smart enough to effectively automate what is now a very manual process,” said Stephen Schmidt, CISO, Amazon Web Services. “Amazon Macie approaches information security in a more intelligent way. By using machine learning to understand the content and user behavior of each organization, it can cut through huge volumes of data with better visibility and more accurate alerts, allowing customers to focus on securing their sensitive information instead of wasting time trying to find it.”
Netflix is among the customers now using the Amazon service, after the television network has invested “substantial resources” in building tools that protect sensitive information against unauthorised access or leaks, according to Patrick Kelley, senior cloud security engineer, Netflix. “Since we started using Amazon Macie, we’ve found that it is flexible enough to solve a range challenges that would have previously required us to write custom code or build internal tools, such as securing PII and alerting us to access anomalies, helping us move fast with confidence,” he said.