SQL Server Column Encryption
When the most valuable component in your environment is storing sensitive data, doing so in clear text and relying on other security mechanisms to protect the data has come and gone. As companies begin to use SQL Server for all their mission critical applications, data encryption has becomes a feature that is often needed to protect the data. Moreover, legislation and growing security concerns have brought data security to the forefront of many IT shops things to do list.
Unfortunately, SQL Server 2000 has no native capabilities to encrypt a column. Companies use a third party product to meet this need. Here are some products on the market:How To: Encrypt a Column of Data) an example is provided to build the following:
- Master key
- Symmetric key
- Apply the encryption key to the column
- Work with your business and legal teams to understand which data needs to be protected and how it is currently being protected. Ask the question - 'Are these security measures acceptable?' and see if column level encryption is necessary.
- Determine other portions of your data that require encryption such as communications, file systems, files, backups, etc.
- Take some time to review and test these technologies to determine if they are suitable for your needs.
- Work with your team to rollout this level of security to properly protect your data.
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Article Last Updated: 2006-06-09