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Zettaset 2014 Predictions - Hadoop: An Era of Enterprise-class Security is about to Begin

VMblog 2014 Prediction Series

Virtualization and Cloud executives share their predictions for 2014.  Read them in this series exclusive.

Contributed article by Jim Vogt, CEO at Zettaset

2014 Hadoop: An Era of enterprise-class security is about to begin

The majority of today's data is unstructured, meaning it is raw and disorganized, and until the data can be organized into a structured format for analysis it cannot be a source of useful information. Hadoop has become an increasingly popular option to process, organize, and store huge amounts of data, making it an appealing solution for data mining and business analytics purposes. Back in 2012, the big prediction was that 2013 was to be the break-out year for Hadoop. That didn't happen. Was it hype? Was it completely wrong? In short, no.

Like any new technology, the adoption rate has not yet reached the tipping point, but is steadily increasing.  It looks like Hadoop will have its break-out moment in 2014. The pundits were simply off by a year.  This can be largely attributed to the fact that Hadoop has many shortcomings that make it unsuitable for widespread adoption across many enterprise organizations, especially those in verticals with strict requirements for data security and compliance, such as financial services, healthcare, and federal systems.

As we approach 2014 we have already seen growing interest in Hadoop from financial services organizations that have collected massive amounts of unstructured data and are seeking a cost-effective way to store, organize, and extract business value from it. This demonstrates an uptick in Hadoop deployment, even though many organizations are still in the exploratory stage.  Enterprises are not throwing out their existing data storage and management technologies, however, but are looking for ways for Hadoop to co-exist with relational databases, for example.  However, with all of the progress in 2013 almost behind us, there are still many unanswered questions about security.

Hadoop is working to overcome security hurdles in order to achieve broader deployment.   Branded open-source Hadoop distributions today still lack the software automation that enterprises have come to expect from their existing database systems.  For example, open-source Hadoop lacks even basic Active Directory integration capabilities, and user roles and permissions must be manually entered.  For larger organizations, this is a painful, time-consuming process.  Hadoop also lacks basic data-at-rest security controls such as encryption.  C-level executives know that successfully integrating Hadoop into an organization requires the right processes that ensure sensitive data contained in the Hadoop cluster is fully protected.

Commercial software vendors like Zettaset have stepped in to address the critical security needs of enterprises that are adopting Hadoop.  The fragmented nature of the Hadoop ecosystem, comprised of multiple branded Hadoop distributions and competing Hadoop projects, makes it unlikely that the open source community can provide what is needed in the near-term.

BI and analytics vendors are also beginning to embrace Hadoop.  They, too, seek a way to ensure that the Hadoop database is secure and that access can be carefully controlled.  There are many exciting developments on the horizon for Big Data in the year ahead, including the roll-out of Hadoop 2.0.  However, it will not be open source projects that tip the scale, but the availability of comprehensive, enterprise-class security capabilities from ISVs with expertise in that domain that will make 2014 the break-out year for Hadoop.


About the Author

With more than 25 years of leadership experience in both start-up and established corporations, Jim Vogt brings a wealth of business and technology expertise to his role as president and CEO of Zettaset. Most recently, Jim served as senior vice president and general manager of the Cloud Services business unit at Blue Coat Systems. Prior to Blue Coat, he served as president and CEO at Trapeze Networks, which was acquired by Belden, Inc. He was also president and CEO at data encryption start-up Ingrian Networks (acquired in April, 2008 by SafeNet).

Published Tuesday, December 17, 2013 6:27 AM by David Marshall
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