Security Experts:

Voltage Security Launches 'Stateless' Tokenization Solution

Voltage Security announced a new tokenization technology to secure sensitive data in a way that reduces the risk of a data breach while still complying with storing the information on disk.

Voltage Secure Stateless Tokenization (SST) technology protects payment card data for enterprises, merchants and payment processors. Voltage SST is offered as part of the Voltage SecureData Enterprise data security platform that combines encryption, tokenization, data masking, and key management.

Voltage Security LogoTokenization, a way of substituting sensitive data such as payment card information with non-sensitive values, is one of the data protection methods recommended under PCI DSS. However, first-generation tokenization products can increase the cost of staying compliant as the business grows and the data becomes more complex, according to Voltage.

Voltage SST eliminates the token database and the need to store sensitive data, which simplifies deployments. Since sensitive cardholder data such as primary account numbers are not being stored in any of the systems, enterprises don't have to worry about making sure applications and systems are correctly implementing the Payment Card Industry (PCI) Data Security Standard (DSS) requirements.

Enterprises can "substantially decrease PCI DSS compliance costs," reduce complexity, and lessen the number of applications and systems that need to be audited, Voltage said. Customers would free up a substantial portion of IT and compliance budgets for other areas.

Voltage's patent-pending approach to secure tokenization uses a set of static, pre-generated tables containing random numbers created using a FIPS random number generator, Terence Spies, CTO of Voltage Security, told SecurityWeek. These static tables are unique to each Voltage SST customer and small enough to reside in the memory of the Voltage SecureData virtual appliances.

The tables are used to produce a unique, random token for each primary account number entered into the system, and the tokens are irreversible without having access to the tokenization system. "The method that creates the token from the random numbers is provably secure, withstands cryptanalysis, and is based on well-established security principles," Spies said.

Not storing sensitive data means there is less risk of a data breach. The fact that the lookup tables are stored in memory also means the platform has better performance, since it is faster to access data in memory than from disk.

There are no software prerequisites for Voltage SST and it works with virtually all languages and platforms, the company said. The new technology would be deployed in customers in industries such as payment card processing, retail, financial services and airline industries.

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Fahmida Y. Rashid is a Senior Contributing Writer for SecurityWeek. She has experience writing and reviewing security, core Internet infrastructure, open source, networking, and storage. Before setting out her journalism shingle, she spent nine years as a help-desk technician, software and Web application developer, network administrator, and technology consultant.