How DSPM Fits into Your Cloud Security Stack

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Read more about author Gad Rosenthal.

DSPM solutions provide unique security capabilities and are specifically tailored to addressing sensitive data in the cloud, but also to supporting a holistic cloud security stack. As the variety and sophistication of attacks increase over time, new challenges arise that the existing security stack can hardly keep up with. A new, more aligned, and holistic inventory of security tools should be considered, consisting of identity threat protection, data-related risk reduction, privacy management, and a host of other imperative elements while ensuring continuous monitoring of any cloud asset, including CSPs, SaaS apps, File Shares, and DBaaS. However, building the most appropriate cloud security stack to do so may prove challenging in light of the numerous different – but similar-sounding – security domains in the market. 

DSPM tools protect data wherever it resides (IaaS, PaaS, SaaS, DBaaS, and File Shares), combined with advanced identity-centric data threat protection. They empower security teams to reduce data risk and achieve unparalleled visibility into data location, misconfiguration, comprehensive and tailored classification, access permissions, usage patterns, and potential threats, ensuring continuous data security and governance. With this in mind, we can evaluate how these capabilities compare to and complement other cloud security tools within the organizational stack.


Cloud security posture management (CSPM) tools are specifically designed to secure cloud service provider environments. They focus on identifying and mitigating security risks related to misconfigurations, compliance violations, and other cloud security threats, often also providing a degree of data classification and highlighting data repositories.

When comparing the two, it is important to note that CSPM tools focus on securing cloud infrastructure and providing insights into sensitive data hosted within it, while DSPM tools play a crucial role in enhancing the overall security posture of an organization, across cloud-hosted data repositories, by addressing data-centric security challenges and promoting a proactive approach to data security and identity management. Each provides a strategic layer in the organizational security stack and complements each other within a comprehensive cybersecurity framework.


Data loss prevention (DLP) tools primarily focus on on-prem environments and file share repositories aimed at preventing unauthorized access and data breaches. They are architectured to be integrated into the on-prem networking layer of organizations and, as such, to prevent potential threats. While they contribute to overall compliance efforts, their primary focus is securing data through monitoring, access controls, and preventing data loss. DLP tools address a broader set of cybersecurity concerns beyond privacy regulations.

DLP tools concentrate on preventing data leakage and are adopted for on-prem environments. For cloud environments, where a hermetic leakage solution becomes a challenge due to the ever-shifting and evolving nature of such environments, DSPM tools provide both data exfiltration monitoring and enhanced security posture capabilities, enabling the organization to address data-centric security challenges and promote a proactive approach to data security management. The two solutions could benefit the cloud security stack because they complement each other. DLP solutions allow you to control sanctioned data flow from on-prem environments to external sources, while DSPM tools provide data sprawl risk management in cloud environments. 

DSPM vs. Privacy

Privacy tools focus on data classification and compliance requests (also known as privacy management). They help organizations manage and protect sensitive data by identifying, categorizing, and tracking personal and sensitive information across the enterprise, as well as complying with privacy requests such as data subject requests (DSR).

While privacy tools address concerns related to data privacy and compliance infrastructure, they often lack the ability to identify data repositories and solely focus on classification and privacy management. DSPM tools, in such cases, play a crucial role in enhancing the overall security posture of an organization by addressing data-centric security challenges and promoting a proactive approach to data security management. The two solutions could benefit the cloud security stack because DSPM tools discover repositories of sensitive data and assess how they impact the organizational risk, while privacy tools harness those insights and allow the organization to manage specific privacy requirements such as DSR.

A Holistic Security Stack with DSPM

Cloud security has a well-known agenda and clear-cut use cases that security owners know by heart: Protect the crown jewels and support business needs while providing organizations with confidentiality, integrity, and availability. Over time, the overlapping requirements and offerings created redundancies that led to heavily overburdened security stacks and an overall lack of understanding as to the value gained from each type of security domain. When data is concerned, your tools should ensure a holistic approach rather than a specific one that will augment your existing stack for safe and secure cloud adoption and use.