Solving Big Data Security with the New Version of Tableau

Solving Big Data Security with the New Version of Tableau

Tableau, a great piece of software for analyzing big data, just got more secure, more powerful, and easier to use.

In its latest release, Tableau deals with one of the messiest parts of big data – securely bringing sensitive information from remote sources into a single application where it can be analyzed.  In previous versions of Tableau, the program required that the raw data be drawn in from the cloud to the Tableau server.  This further dispersed the information by creating additional copies every time the data was refreshed – an inherent security risk.

Up to this point, the best option for those who wanted to minimize copies of confidential information was to create a special script on the local server which would allow Tableau to generate the necessary data extracts.  The locally processed data could then be republished to the Tableau Cloud server, minimizing exposure.  This kind of fix worked, but it required a lot of painstaking, customized, and ultimately expensive work to accomplish.

The newest version of Tableau fixes this problem through a tool called “Tableau Online Data Sync”.  Rather than copying the raw data from a cloud server onto the Tableau server for analysis, the new version holds all the relevant data locally – essentially creating that custom script itself.  The sync tool is a small app which lives on the local server, minimizing the need for constant uploads of large data sets to additional locations.

The newest version of Tableau also increases security by reducing the need for VPN connections to servers with sensitive information.  The previous version of the program kept encrypted copies of authentication credentials on remote servers, which it frequently used to draw in data from disparate sources.  In the newest version, those credentials remain on the local server, reducing the program’s security footprint.

Tableau users no longer have to decide between an expensive customization and secure data.  Custom scripts are no longer necessary – the sync tool has solved the problem of data leakage.  And now that the cloud version of Tableau is more secure, organizations can also skip the decision about whether an on-premise server (which would cost at least $10,000) is needed to minimize the risk of a data breach.

All of this adds up to a much better product – one which we at ECHO enthusiastically recommend.  The cloud version of Tableau is only $500 annually per license – and most organizations will only require a single user.  Or if you’re at a nonprofit, it might even be free.  Are you ready to harness the power of big data?  We’re here and ready to help with all your Tableau needs.  Contact us to find out more.