MessageGears has launched a new user data security feature for Accelerator, the company’s award-winning email marketing platform. The new feature enables business-to-consumer (B2C) marketers to communicate with individual customers in a personalized way — at scale — without exposing any personally identifiable (PII) customer data to a company’s internal teams or to any third-party legacy marketing cloud.
The new data security encryption feature was originally developed for client Chick-fil-A, who wanted to implement a solution to maximize protection of customer data against malicious attacks and data breaches. The custom-designed feature uses Amazon Web Services (AWS) and key management service (KMS) encryption to anonymize customer data so that even internal database administrators only see a string of letters and numbers rather than customers’ personally identifiable information. Each row of data contains an encrypted data key that neither a client nor MessageGears is able to retrieve without going through KMS encryption.
With this feature, the MessageGears platform allows clients to personalize based upon any attribute in their database without risking that data to exposure either internally or within the cloud. Sensitive data remains encrypted “at rest” within a client’s data systems until decryption of fields is necessary only at the moment of launching an individual campaign. And even then, data transferred to the MessageGears “render and send” cloud environment is deleted once the message has been successfully rendered, leaving no client data residing outside of a client’s internal systems. Data remains safely within client data stores, and the only data transmitted and decrypted from these sources is the data used to personalize the message, sent as emails, push notifications, text messages, or other outbound messaging.
“The MessageGears platform and new KMS security feature is a game changer for any business that wants to communicate with customers in a personalized way but has concerns about sending personally identifiable customer data to the cloud where it’s outside their control and vulnerable to security breaches,” said Dan Roy, chief product officer and co-founder of MessageGears. “This new feature provides data-rich, enterprise organizations with the confidence to send highly personalized messages that key off everything from geolocation to preferred store to most recent order.”
If there’s any question as to the security of either system at any time, MessageGears can unilaterally revoke access to the decrypted data for as long as it takes to re-establish that any problems have been resolved. This helps to contain breaches from outside a client’s firewall quickly, without negative impact to client data. MessageGears is also able to layer further anonymization to encrypted data, adding a secure hash to the code so even a brute-force attack would fail to determine the full code sequence and gain access to the data.
The key distinction between traditional software as a solution (SaaS) marketing clouds and the MessageGears platform is MessageGears’ philosophy of maintaining the client’s data systems as the systems of record, as opposed to building a secondary datasource maintained by the MessageGears platform. As a result, no data needs to be duplicated, replicated, or synchronized outside of the existing client data systems. This distinction makes MessageGears unique in the marketing technology space, offering a full suite of marketing automation features and functionality with the scalability and throughput of a cloud message delivery platform, without requiring the creation of external data silos or expensive data replication.
This new data security feature comes on the heels of the company’s recent user interface update, which included multiple major functionality upgrades designed to make it easier for marketers to take control of their email campaigns using live internal data in real time.
“Customer service has been a core principle at MessageGears and has been since it was founded in 2010,” said Roger Barnette, CEO of MessageGears. “These new security features are in line with our company’s mission to be the best messaging platform for every enterprise-level marketing team. We are very aware how demanding the job of the enterprise marketer has become. One by one, we are removing each data access challenge and data security issue that prevents enterprise marketers from building the ambitious email campaigns that aren’t possible on legacy marketing clouds.”