How Vertica and SecureData work together

Vertica provides functions to encrypt and decrypt data using SecureData.

Vertica provides functions to encrypt and decrypt data using SecureData.

Voltage SecureData supplies a number of interfaces for applications to use its encryption: web-based APIs, command-line tools, and SDKs for C, C#, and Java. Vertica has developed a connector that calls the SecureData API that lets you:

  • Encrypt sensitive data as it is being loaded into Vertica using SecueData's FPE feature. You can ensure data is stored in Vertica in its encrypted state (referred to as "encrypted at rest"). Authorized users can decrypt the data as needed. Unauthorized users only see the encrypted values. Decryption for authorized users can be automated using views or access policies. The data is transparently decrypted for them.

  • Encrypt semi-sensitive data that is stored unencrypted in Vertica so unauthorized users only see a masked version of the data. You an also automate this on-the-fly encryption using access policies.

The encryption method you choose depends in the data you are processing. For example, regulations or contracts may require you to encrypt specific pieces of data. In these cases, use SecureData to encrypt your data as it is loaded, so it is never stored in an unencrypted format within Vertica.

In other cases, you may have semi-sensitive data that you can choose between the two options. In these cases, choose the method that requires the least number encryptions or decryptions (and therefore of calls to SecureData). If most of the queries on the data need to be masked from users who should not see the unencrypted values, then encrypt the data at rest. Alternatively, if the most of the queries will be from authorized users, with only occasional queries where the data should be masked, then store the data in an unencrypted format and use on-the-fly encryption to mask the data.