Wednesday Jul 21, 2010

IRM Evaluation Documents - Where Are They Now?

Among the key benefits of Oracle IRM is the tracking of external communications, so I thought it might be interesting to summarise a few facts and figures about our evaluation service - which is, after all, a publicly accessible self-registration IRM service.

Oracle has been running the service for about 3 years now, and it has been used by about 3000 users. So, there are at least 3000 copies of our demo documents out there somewhere - but who is using them currently, and where?

To answer this question, I ran an audit report for the last 7 days. The report tells me that there are about 60 users actively using the service right now. The report tells me that those 60 users are spread across about 15 countries - predominantly the USA and UK, but also in China, India, Brazil, Portugal, Germany, Slovakia, Austria, France, Czech Republic, Ireland and others - as shown in the following map.


New users are self-registering via the simple demo page at a rate of 1 or 2 per day. The last few days have seen new accounts created and used by Forrest in China (an Oracle colleague), Telma in Brazil, and Nonogaki in Japan. Welcome aboard - please send us some feedback. Two more have registered while I've been writing this article.

The log also tells me which users are users which documents, which gives some indication of what interests them most. Here is a glimpse of the activities of the three users mentioned above.


This ongoing accumulation of new users by self-registration demonstrates that IRM can quite easily meet the needs of external communication and collaboration without creating an administrative burden. We just sit back and let users register themselves - although in a real deployment we obviously recommend manual and/or automated approval processes for new accounts.

In fact, we don't do any manual rights admin for the new users. The self-registration process grants each new user the rights we want them to have, and those rights apply to pre-existing content as well as any new content we might make available - or that users seal for themselves. We set up a policy framework three years ago, and users just come and go over time without us needing to change anything.

The only time we intervene manually is when we're using the evaluation service to host a formal proof of concept and we want to explore capabilities that the simple demo does not cover.

On top of the admin benefits of self-service, the above facts and figures demonstrate that those of us who run the evaluation service have a powerful insight into who is using and creating sealed documents, how they are using them, how often, where, and when.

Monday May 03, 2010

Oracle Database Security Protecting the Oracle IRM Schema

Acquiring the Information Rights Management technology in 2006 was part of Oracle's strategic security vision and IRM complements nicely the overall Oracle security set of solutions. A year ago I spoke about how Oracle has solutions that can help companies protect information throughout its entire life cycle. With our acquisition of Sun this set of solutions has solidified and has even extended down to the operating system and hardware level. Oracle can now offer customers technology that protects their data from the disk, through the database to documents on the desktop!

With the recent release of Oracle IRM 11g I was tasked to configure demonstration and evaluation environments and I thought it would make a nice story to leverage some of the security features in the latest release of the Oracle Database. After building these environments I thought I would put together a simple video demonstrating how both Database Advanced Security and Information Rights Management combined can provide a very secure platform for protecting your information. Have a look at the following which highlights these database security options.

  • Oracle Advanced Security Network Encryption protecting the communication from the Oracle IRM server to the Database server. Encryption techniques provide confidentiality and integrity of the data passing to and from the IRM service on the back end.
  • Transparent Data Encryption protecting the Oracle IRM database schema. Encryption is used to provide confidentiality of the IRM data whilst it resides at rest in the database table space.
  • Database Vault is used to ensure only the Oracle IRM service has access to query and update the information that resides in the database. This is an excellent method of ensuring that database administrators cannot look at or make changes to the Oracle IRM database whilst retaining their ability to administrate the database. The last thing you want after deploying an IRM solution is for a curious or unhappy DBA to run a query that grants them rights to your company financial data or documents pertaining to a merger or acquisition.



New Oracle IRM 11g presentation videos

In amongst all the end of year activity we've been able to start the creation of some new YouTube video's of the Oracle IRM 11g release. First on the agenda was to show the core features of Oracle IRM with the new 11g server.

We also created a demonstration of the simple ways content can be secured without any training on the end users part and without impacting their existing day to day practice of using sensitive information. Have a look at this video...

Tuesday Feb 24, 2009

Simple Oracle IRM flash presentation

This demo has now moved to another archived post.

Friday Feb 06, 2009

Oracle IRM demonstration on YouTube

I converted the IRM demo last night to a video, removed the slide ware and uploaded to YouTube.




Oracle IRM protects and tracks your sensitive information no matter where it goes. It combines business friendly encryption with role based usage rights and auditing.

11g quick guide


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