Data Loss Prevention Software

By Bojan Jovanović February 23, 2021

A curious fact about our species is that we find it easy to neglect thoughts about consequences until it’s too late. Data security is a case in point. What if a hard drive failure makes your accounting records inaccessible? What if a fire or earthquake destroys your servers and backups? What if a disgruntled employee scrambles essential data files?

Poof. All that work, gone. And maybe your business too.

That’s where data loss prevention software comes in.

DLP is almost an art form these days. It’s a suite of tools, services, and practices that work together to keep you up and running if worse comes to worst. This software allows you to set up policies and safeguards around your company’s most crucial files to prevent essential data from being lost or compromised.

Finding the best tools for this job is not easy – but you are in luck. We have analyzed the current market and identified the best solutions currently available.

Best DLP Solutions in 2021

  • Easy to set up and use
  • Lots of customization options
  • Doesn’t impact network speed
  • No free trial available
Price BESPOKE QUOTE
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  • Fast setup
  • Deep analysis
  • No need to create policies from scratch
  • Customization is complicated
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  • Great user tracking
  • Transparent pricing
  • Very customizable
  • Full DLP features only in top-tier plans
Price $25/mo/user
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  • Quick policy management
  • Centralized reporting
  • Nice automation tools
  • Very complicated
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  • Very detailed monitoring tool
  • Good device control
  • Lots of endpoints covered
  • Cumbersome app
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Do I Need a Data Loss Prevention Service?

Business owners often ask whether they need a specific service or they can get by without it. The question comes up in any discussion of tools that provide data loss protection services.

We’ve all heard horror stories about full system wipes, ransomware attacks, and data leaks that cause millions of dollars of damage while ruining corporate reputations.
And it’s not just the companies that are worried. Every day, employees and customers are more interested in how their data is being stored, used, and protected – that’s the impetus behind GDPR and HIPAA regulations.

Let’s take a look at a few of the reasons you should consider purchasing tools for data loss prevention.

Compliance

Companies that operate with customer and employee data, especially those that operate with international clients over the internet, are required to comply with an ever-growing web of privacy and security policies. It used to be that such policies were optional ways to stand above competitors. Now they are a must.

Protection of personal data has become a top priority after years of widely publicized cases of misuse, and corporate and personal data theft. DLP software helps you identify classified data and actively monitor it for policy violations. If an issue arises, your security team will be immediately notified.

Data Loss Monitoring

Software for data loss prevention isn’t there to enforce arcane rules and confuse you with strange acronyms. Its main function is monitoring corporate data on your network, the cloud, and at other endpoints. By analyzing how your data travels, you’ll be able to find security weak spots and build a better, stronger system. A DLP utility is an essential tool for the information security officers and network administrators who are responsible for creating and enforcing your data security strategy.

Protecting Intellectual Property

Data breaches are more common than ever. Stolen data is worth a lot on the dark web, and breaches are widely publicized, making data loss prevention price points a tiny dent in a budget compared to the monetary damage a leak can cause. Losing data can cost your brand its public image, breaking trust with customers, perhaps permanently.

A breach can make your company’s trade secrets public, too, giving the competition an unfair edge.

These are just a few of the reasons that data loss protection software safeguards not only your data, customers, and employees, but your bottom line too. It’s just good business.

1. Symantec DLP

" Best overall "

symantec review - company logo
  • Integrations
    Network, storage, cloud, endpoints
  • Free trial
    No
  • Platforms
    Windows, macOS, Linux
  • Deployment
    Cloud-based, on-premise
  • Data fingerprinting
  • Real-time network monitoring

Things we liked / disliked:

  • Easy to set up and use
  • Lots of customization options
  • Doesn’t impact network speed
  • No free trial available

Things we liked / disliked:

  • Easy to set up and use
  • Lots of customization options
  • Doesn’t impact network speed
  • No free trial available
  • Integrations
    Network, storage, cloud, endpoints
  • Free trial
    No
  • Platforms
    Windows, macOS, Linux
  • Deployment
    Cloud-based, on-premise
  • Data fingerprinting
  • Real-time network monitoring

Cybersecurity giant Symantec needs no introduction. Now part of Broadcom, the company responsible for some of the industry’s most widely used security solutions has also developed the best data loss prevention software on the market. This DLP vendor provides the highest levels of enterprise data protection. It has become the tool of choice for many companies in the past few years.

Symantec’s comprehensive data protection solution covers endpoints, networks, cloud-based data, and local storage – pretty much every possible angle of attack. Its monitoring tools scan the local hard drive and identify vulnerable places that are exposed to the outside world – programs like email clients, browsers, cloud storage apps, plus USB flash drives and virtual desktops. Network monitoring plays a key role in this DLP tool, which keeps data safe by constantly performing deep scans of network traffic without causing any packet loss.

Data leakage most commonly happens through web traffic, experts say, so a solution that provides a high level of internet security without compromising network performance is a big plus.

Cloud integration is a particular focus of Symantec’s DLP. The software is capable of real-time monitoring of corporate email traffic, and Symantec’s developers boast that current versions of the tool reduce false positives with brand-new algorithms.

As for integration, the tool can connect to Office 365, Dropbox, Google Workspace (formerly known as G Suite), OneDrive, and hundreds of other applications. This data loss prevention solution works great with individual computers, networked workstations, and servers. It plays nice with different kinds of databases and network-attached storage devices too. Symantec includes a set of tools that let you fine-tune file protection in the corporate environment.

Symantec doesn’t offer a free trial period for this product, but it’s possible to schedule a demo session by contacting the company’s sales department. Symantec consultants can also help you choose the right DLP for your company, creating a custom offer that provides the best feature-to-price ratio.

Final Thoughts

Symantec DLP is very easy to recommend. It’s one of the best data loss prevention services to be found anywhere, a service that’s easy to integrate into any complex computing environment, where it will tick along unnoticed, just as it should.

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2. SecureTrust DLP

" Best out-of-the-box solution "

securetrust review - company logo
  • Integrations
    Network, storage, cloud, endpoints
  • Free trial
    No
  • Platforms
    Windows, macOS, Linux
  • Deployment
    Cloud-based, on-premise
  • Investigation management
  • Automatic blocking of non-compliant web traffic

Things we liked / disliked:

  • Fast setup
  • Deep analysis
  • No need to create policies from scratch
  • Customization is complicated

Things we liked / disliked:

  • Fast setup
  • Deep analysis
  • No need to create policies from scratch
  • Customization is complicated
  • Integrations
    Network, storage, cloud, endpoints
  • Free trial
    No
  • Platforms
    Windows, macOS, Linux
  • Deployment
    Cloud-based, on-premise
  • Investigation management
  • Automatic blocking of non-compliant web traffic

When you visit SecureTrust’s website, you’ll see a very bold claim: “The leader in security and compliance solutions.” Not many companies can boast that their products are as easy to use as SecureTrust, especially in the world of data loss prevention software. With this out-of-the-box solution, businesses big and small can quickly deploy DLP services and immediately get ahead of digital threats.

The main selling point of SecureTrust DLP is its hassle-free setup procedure. Everything is automatically configured, so all you have to do is install the software and let it scan your systems for data to protect. You don’t even need to make up policies, as the tool comes with a set of more than 70 default policy settings. You can easily configure SecureTrust by enabling and disabling specific parts of the software. The defaults make this an incredibly straightforward data loss prevention tool, but if your business requires a more complicated setup, you may find configuring SecureTrust a time-consuming process. Customizing the software’s protection features means individually adjusting all of the settings and applied policies, which can take a lot of time and effort.

SecureTrust DLP can fully analyze the computer network and categorize the data it finds. This helps a lot with the initial setup and reduces maintenance burdens, especially with an option to schedule scans. The software integrates with many cloud-based systems, including Google Workspace and Dropbox Business. It can also monitor network file shares and anything mounted in Windows Explorer.

Like other data loss prevention services, SecureTrust DLP also works on endpoints, even scanning password-protected files and archives. And for companies with a strong social media presence, this DLP is very much a must, considering it can dig into posts on social networks for potential data leaks.

Final Thoughts

SecureTrust DLP is a great solution for companies that want to stop data loss. SecureTrust proves that data loss protection doesn’t need to be complicated to be effective.

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3. Teramind DLP

" Best budget solution "

teramind dlp review - company logo
  • Integrations:
    Network, storage, cloud, endpoints
  • Free trial:
    Yes
  • Platforms:
    Windows, macOS, Linux
  • Deployment:
    Cloud-based, on-premise

Things we liked / disliked:

  • Great user tracking
  • Transparent pricing
  • Very customizable
  • Full DLP features only in top-tier plans

Things we liked / disliked:

  • Great user tracking
  • Transparent pricing
  • Very customizable
  • Full DLP features only in top-tier plans
  • Integrations:
    Network, storage, cloud, endpoints
  • Free trial:
    Yes
  • Platforms:
    Windows, macOS, Linux
  • Deployment:
    Cloud-based, on-premise

Affordable data loss prevention software comes in many shapes and forms – including Teramind DLP, a top-of-the-line system monitoring solution that will help your small, medium, or large enterprise protect crucial data without breaking the bank in the process. Teramind DLP is the most cost-effective solution on our list of the market’s best data loss protection products.

At its core, Teramind DLP is monitoring software. It’s designed to target the most common vulnerability of all computer systems – the user. Firewalls, policies, and other safeguards can easily be rendered useless by a single foolish click on a phishing email. Compared to the tools in our other data loss prevention software reviews, Teramind’s solution is much more comprehensive when protecting against internal threats. The app can monitor instant messaging, file transfers, social media activity, keystrokes, and malicious events. Setup is a breeze. You can apply preset policies or create a custom profile. The app is compliant with international user data privacy laws.

Teramind is one of the few companies in the DLP business that are transparent with product pricing. Normally, you need to schedule sessions with the sales departments of DLP vendors to get a vague hint of how much the DLP software will end up costing you.

Teramind is nothing like that. You can freely peruse the pricing plans on the website. Everything is transparent, so you’ll be able to quickly find the most affordable price point for a plan that meets your needs. Subscriptions are charged monthly on a per-user or per-endpoint basis. Every plan can be tested for a week or two without charge. That should be more than enough time to figure out whether the service is a good fit.

Final Thoughts

Teramind’s DLP user-monitoring features are great, and we love the low price, which makes this very affordable DLP software. This application is a terrific solution for both simple and complex computing environments.

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4. McAfee DLP

" Best for large companies "

mcafee review - company logo
  • Integrations
    Network, storage, cloud, endpoints
  • Free trial
    No
  • Platforms
    Windows, macOS, Linux
  • Deployment
    Cloud-based, on-premise
  • Detailed data control
  • Incident management panel

Things we liked / disliked:

  • Quick policy management
  • Centralized reporting
  • Nice automation tools
  • Very complicated

Things we liked / disliked:

  • Quick policy management
  • Centralized reporting
  • Nice automation tools
  • Very complicated
  • Integrations
    Network, storage, cloud, endpoints
  • Free trial
    No
  • Platforms
    Windows, macOS, Linux
  • Deployment
    Cloud-based, on-premise
  • Detailed data control
  • Incident management panel

Very few companies in the cybersecurity world can rival McAfee for brand recognition. It’s not just the snazzy red logo, bold lettering, or the rockstar founder. We’re talking about years of top-of-the-line security solutions under the McAfee banner – including a strong candidate for the best data loss prevention service you can get for your company.

McAfee DLP is part of the company’s Total Protection line of products. Specifically, it’s the all-in-one enterprise data loss prevention component, a tool that finds sensitive data in your computer system or network, enforces policies, and protects your investment from data leaks.

Like other software we have reviewed, McAfee DLP integrates deeply into your computing environment. It consists of six modules, each dedicated to a specific task in the scanning-protecting-reporting pipeline. Most importantly, the technology that McAfee has developed lets you see exactly how your data is being used and where the leaks may be.

This data leakage protection software isn’t for the faint of heart. Since it’s mainly aimed at enterprise-class corporations, it requires a lot of prep and setup before it truly shines.

The center of it all is MVISION ePO, a control panel through which you can monitor network security, policy violations, and status reports on problem resolution. The endpoint tool monitors confidential data, while the device control module ensures no data leaves through portable USB drives and memory cards. Network traffic and cloud monitoring are part of the deal as well.

The most valuable feature of this software comes from the automation of its DLP tools. Once the setup is complete, you can rest assured that all of the policies are updated whenever necessary. There’s no need to create duplicates of policies if you need to secure data on multiple fronts the app automatically does that for you.

As an acknowledgment of this tool’s complexity, McAfee offers not just free demos, but an extensive training program which we highly recommend as a method of learning DLP basics, mastering McAfee’s solution, and helping your employees understand all the potential problems a data leak can cause.

Final Thoughts

McAfee DLP is one of the most complex products in our data loss prevention software comparison, but it’s a tool and an integrated service no serious enterprise should overlook. If you already have a computer security team in your company, arm them with this DLP and create a better, safer environment for your data and your employees.

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5. Endpoint Protector

" Best for small businesses "

endpoint protector review - company logo
  • Integrations
    Network, storage, cloud, endpoints
  • Free trial
    Yes
  • Platforms
    Windows, macOS, Linux
  • Deployment
    Cloud-based, on-premise
  • eDiscovery data scanner
  • Content-aware protection

Things we liked / disliked:

  • Very detailed monitoring tool
  • Good device control
  • Lots of endpoints covered
  • Cumbersome app

Things we liked / disliked:

  • Very detailed monitoring tool
  • Good device control
  • Lots of endpoints covered
  • Cumbersome app
  • Integrations
    Network, storage, cloud, endpoints
  • Free trial
    Yes
  • Platforms
    Windows, macOS, Linux
  • Deployment
    Cloud-based, on-premise
  • eDiscovery data scanner
  • Content-aware protection

Endpoint Protector publisher CoCoSys is not a small fish in the big pond of data loss prevention solutions. Companies like Samsung, Western Union, and Allianz trust Endpoint Protector to safeguard their business-critical systems. Known for providing 360 degrees of protection against data breaches, it is a complete solution for securing any startup or small business in the internet age.

Endpoint Protector safeguards essential business data in two ways. First, it monitors all data in motion, whether that’s through network traffic or connected devices. It’s a content-aware protection system that does all the heavy lifting, enforced by restrictions you specify in the management panel.

Backing up the traffic monitor is an at-rest data and system scanner called eDiscovery. This tool ensures that the policies of the DLP solution are strictly followed throughout all the company’s data stores. It alerts system administrators to take action if it detects policy violations.

Endpoint Protector’s monitoring and reporting options are comprehensive. For example, you’ll be able to see every single device connected to the company network, including its type, serial number, last time used, and on which computer it is installed. This is a great way to detect potential data breach points, especially if your environment includes a lot of devices that carry data.

Granted, it’s not the most streamlined app in the world. We have seen more than a few data loss prevention products that provide similar information with fewer clicks. But Endpoint Protector is still a strong contender.

As you might guess from the name, endpoint protection is a big part of this app. Depending on the operating system, you can set policies and monitor endpoints with automated USB encryption to protect data leaving via the most common data transfer method.

In addition to the free demo that’s available upon request, you can sign up for a 10-day free trial of Endpoint Protector. The trial version is limited to 50 computers and 5 mobile devices, but it should be more than enough to familiarize yourself with the tool and assess whether it’s the best DLP for your business.

Final Thoughts

Thousands of system administrators all over the world are eager to recommend Endpoint Protector. It’s a great tool for companies that want full control over their data and aren’t afraid of navigating a lot of menus and settings. If you’re managing an exploding number of corporate and personal devices on your company network and you need a full solution to protect company data, this is the tool for you.

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Methodology for Reviewing Data Loss Prevention Software

We hope you can now see many of the benefits of DLP software. Let’s explore methods of choosing the best product for your company.

We have developed a framework for evaluating DLP solutions based on objective criteria. We applied this assessment methodology to market leaders, emerging with a list of the best products.

You can use our methodology to narrow down the options or evaluate offerings that didn’t make it onto our list.

Protection

The core function of any DLP is watching over the system. The ability to monitor data, devices, and networks is the main reason to purchase DLP software.

The ideal data loss prevention utility should monitor internet traffic (including email and instant messaging), perform remote device control, fingerprint documents with watermarks, and perform other advanced features. DLP solutions may also cover cloud applications. Some even use machine learning to better understand day-to-day usage on your network, becoming smarter and growing more effective over time.

DLP monitoring is just the first step, the baseline function we expect from these tools. The utilities are not complete without reports and notifications. What good is an app that can’t alert you to a data breach? It must be able to inform you exactly when and where it happened.

We analyze not just how detailed the reporting tools are, but how well the user interface is organized. Network administrators can quickly get all the information they need at a glance with the best DLP tools, and detailed reports should be just a couple of clicks away. Of course, you should be able to automate and schedule automatic security reports.

Integration

Enterprise data security is all about covering every possible exit point for sensitive corporate data, not just monitoring the information highway. That is why we highly value DLPs that aren’t limited to local data monitoring and cloud apps. The perfect tool for this job should be able to cover all the bases.

Of course, it is crucial to protect stored data. But the best DLP solutions also work dynamically with all the apps, devices, and tools found on modern interconnected corporate computer systems. Businesses are increasingly reliant on data, and they create more of it than ever before. So DLP products need to be flexible enough and powerful enough to impose rules, identify vulnerabilities, and monitor communications everywhere your data lives – including mobile devices and employee-provided computing resources.

Customization

Everyone loves an out-of-the-box solution. You can get it running with a minimum investment in time and effort. Lots of features work automatically, and you’ll find dozens of sensible policies ready to use.

But what happens if you need to change something? In every data loss prevention software review we conducted, we took special care to assess customization options. The companies behind the best tools understand that all enterprises are different. Policies need to be flexible enough to account for different business practices, and it should be easy to make changes on the fly.

We assess the policy customization options of each DLP product we review. In addition to evaluating the range of options, we take a deep dive into ease-of-use issues. If the developer hid customization controls deep in the menus or offered very limited options, that’s not something we’ll end up praising in our DLP reviews.

Value

Value is the relationship between benefits and price – and it’s devilishly hard to evaluate in the DLP market. Almost none of these apps are sold according to a public price list.

Because these tools are complex and users have different needs, the companies that develop them employ sales consultants who generate quotes for potential customers. Instead of selling the product as is for a monthly fee, providers work with you to create a customized solution that suits your company’s needs. That’s why this review doesn’t include pricing details. No company uses DLP in exactly the same way as others, so data loss prevention prices can’t be directly compared when reviewing the tools.

We do assess the important benefits that these tools provide, however. We award extra points to companies that provide demos or let potential customers sign up for a free trial. A money-back guarantee is another good sign.

Of course, if we run into a product that is sold according to a more transparent pricing model, we tell you that too. But not many data protection companies are willing to stick to price lists when it comes to their complex and invaluable tools.

FAQ

What are data loss prevention tools?

Applications designed to prevent data loss are utilities that monitor systems, networks, and data stores. They generate reports on data security and issue alerts in case of policy violations. The tools operate on multiple fronts to ensure that no corporate data gets leaked or even accessed without permission. All of those features, and more, are designed to implement compliance with corporate policies and government regulations.

How much does DLP cost?

Data protection and breach prevention are charged per gigabyte for data on the cloud. Local protection can be either charged per gigabyte or device. It’s best to contact providers for a quote.

What is a data loss prevention policy?

A data loss policy is a set of rules that govern the way data loss prevention will be executed. The policy specifies which data will be protected in the first place, classifying it according to protection level. It defines user roles and access permissions, and it defines the procedures to be carried out in case of data loss or breach. It’s usually best to make the initial policy simple, keeping it easy to understand and clear about assigned roles.

How do you implement data loss prevention?

Before you order any data loss prevention software package, it’s best to assess which data requires protection. Classify the data and work out the employee permissions and clearance levels you’ll need to ensure data is used appropriately. You’ll need to understand when and how your data might be at risk. Once you’ve done this prep work, you can evaluate the market’s offerings and contact a vendor to assess your needs, make a quote, and help you implement a comprehensive solution.