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As technology evolves and the world digitizes, cybersecurity has become an increasingly important and necessary factor. After all, we never had so much information about us circulating around and in the hands of so many people. 

Both basic data and extremely sensitive information, such as bank accounts and credit card numbers, travel over the internet and are in the possession of several companies. Which puts users’ privacy and security at risk.

Several regulatory efforts are already being made in Brazil and around the world to guide and clarify the use of data by companies and also protect users. The General Data Protection Law, recently enacted here, is a fine example.

However, they have not been enough to guarantee cybersecurity for Internet users and businesses have faced a series of difficulties to follow the established norms.

To achieve both goals, many companies are betting on tokenization, which we’ll get to know in detail below. Check out!

But after all, what is tokenization

Tokenization is a process that transforms sensitive data, such as your credit card number, into a series of intelligible symbols called tokens. So, for example, the name João da Silva would become XC>35 and his checking account number 058040556-7 would become FG!KL12 after tokenization.

That way, even if a criminal manages to access the company’s database or intercept this information as it travels over the network, all he will be able to see are symbols that won’t make any sense.

And the best thing is that, unlike encryption, it is not possible to revert a token to its original information. This is because, although there are several approaches to creating tokens, most of the time they are generated randomly and without any mathematical relationship with the original data.

These are stored within the company, along with their corresponding tokens, in a highly secure, encrypted and firewall-protected facility. In this way, only authorized users have access to real information.

How tokenization works

To give you a better understanding of how tokenization works, let’s look at an example of this process in payments, the main area in which it is currently being used and is already taking root.

When you make a purchase, whether online or not, using a tokenized payment method, such as e-wallets (Samsung Pay, Apple Pay, Google Pay…), your card details are inserted in the tokenized transaction.

The commercial establishment then passes the tokens to the acquirer, who transfers them to the card brand. Only then does the flag consult the TSP (Token Service Provider) and the data is destokenized. From then on, information such as account or credit card numbers are transferred to the issuing bank, which authorizes the transaction.

Note that during the entire process, from purchase to authorization by the issuing bank, user data is tokenized. That is, even if any of the companies involved suffer an attack or the data is intercepted, it will be completely safe.

The Influence of Tokenization on Cybersecurity

The payments sector is currently the main explorer of tokens, mainly due to the sensitivity of operations. However, tokenization can and is already being explored in many other areas, including cloud computing.

Below, you’ll better understand how this is happening and how tokenization has influenced – and improved – cybersecurity for both businesses and users. Keep watching and check it out!

Payments

Security has always been one of the biggest obstacles for the payments sector in Brazil and worldwide, especially in the mobile environment, increasingly used by consumers and consequently more explored by companies.

However, whether on the premises, on the website or on mobile, tokenization has the potential to make payments much safer for businesses and users and eliminate this obstacle that keeps many consumers away.

With tokens circulating across the network and being stored in the cloud instead of actual customer data, all operations are shielded from ha cking and it becomes easier for the business to comply with established data security standards.

For consumers, in addition to more security, tokenization also provides more convenience. After all, it’s much easier to make payments with tokens than typing giant strings of numbers, CVV, passwords, etc..

For companies, the advantages also go far beyond safety, as with more convenience for the consumer, it is easier to make sales and a series of obstacles are removed from the purchase journey, as is the case with the checkout.

Cyber ​​security of data in the cloud

Cloud computing has long since stopped being a trend and established itself as a great solution for businesses and demands of all kinds. However, many companies are delaying cloud adoption primarily because of the sense of insecurity and lack of control that exists.

After all, in the cloud, data is decentralized, located in multiple places and inside and outside your firewall. Blocking network access to protect this data is no longer an option, as it is needed to access and share it.

However, the truth is that the cloud is a much more secure environment for storing data than most in-house infrastructures and with tokenization, the level of security achieved is even greater.

That’s because, with it, all sensitive information stored or in transit to the cloud is completely decoded. While the original data are kept in an ultra-secure vault within the company.

Thus, in addition to being protected against the action of criminals, they can also have the best-controlled level of access. This ensures that only the right people have access to the original information, while the rest only deal with the tokens.

Internet of Things(IoT)

The Internet of Things (IoT) has rapidly expanded across the world and has become a major concern for consumer cybersecurity. After all, today, cars, refrigerators, toasters and even showers are connected to the internet, collecting and sharing sensitive data about their users. These include information such as name, address, bank account and credit card number.

Keeping all this information secure is quite a challenge for the IoT because of the massive volume with which it is collected, stored and shared. But tokenization is one of the solutions to achieve this goal, especially for “things” with payment functions.

With tokens, you can keep data safe both locally and in the cloud, or in transit to it. Considering that the number of internet-connected devices is expected to reach 12 billion this year, with many billions of them capable of financial transactions, this is essential.

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