How does your group help Sony combat piracy?
Kujawa: There are a number of ways we address it, starting with awareness. We try to stay in lockstep with piracy trends, and understand, for example, how people are getting to our assets, like sneaking into theaters with cameras. There are also a number of forensic initiatives where we're looking at, like new technologies to digitally watermark our assets to figure out ways things cannot be copied, or if they are, to figure out how they're doing it.
We've also built audit tools within our systems to see who is distributing what to whom and when.
When you read about the rash of data breaches since early 2005, how do you apply those lessons that to your business?
Kujawa: It reinforces the importance of security and why we need to invest in technology, communication and awareness in our studios. Security is a corporate obligation, regardless of title. Reading about the breaches reinforces what we're doing is right, and the attention we're spending on security is in line and necessary. We take a hard stance protecting personal information and data.
Is piracy best combated with policy or technology for Sony?
Kujawa: It's both really. With piracy, the speculation is always that company information is more likely to be leaked from an internal source than external. That is addressed more on the policy end. But because technology has progressed so much in 10 years -- the capabilities of small devices, having clear cell phones pictures, the ability to rip streaming video off a site -- there's no linkage back to who is doing it. That has to be addressed with technology.
We're also seeing more focus and attention around the criticality of protecting data as it relates to our business partners, channels and distributors. Sony is really focused on making sure the people we do business with are protected. We do a good job mentoring our partners to get them to where we need them to be.
What kind of content are you responsible for securing?
Kujawa: There are a number of types of assets stored in our content management engine -- anything from public-facing site content, to sales information, how we're tracking with specific products, subtitles, music cues, to accounts-payable invoices.
We use a tool called Universal Content Manager (from Stellent). It includes document management, collaboration, Web content management, and document asset management. Security is built into each of those components; it's critical because of the nature of the content that resides there. We look at the requirements of each of our departments, and plug in the appropriate components into our applications based on that.
What were the main drivers that necessitated a content management system?
Kujawa: It was built around premise of efficiency, security and cost savings. Look at some of ways we fulfill our contractual obligations with distributors or the channel. Part of deal is we need to get them a video or an asset like subtitles or music cues.
When you took a look at that information and how it was passed back and forth, a lot of it was physically shipped around world. Our system digitised our assets, so we save money on physical shipping costs. It's more efficient and secures it in productive way. The ability to audit who sent what, when and where was important as well.
Was security the No. 1 priority over efficiency and cost savings?
Kujawa: Security came into the conversation right out of the gate. Putting one of Sony's assets into an envelope and shipping across world, how many hands touch it, lose it or copy it? If you look at the snail mail process, it's a risky business. Security is always a concern. Sony holds its intellectual property close to heart, it's how we make our money.
We wanted to bring more visibility and audit capability to the entities touching our assets. No. 2 was the tremendous costs savings and efficiency that increased productivity and made improvements in hard costs around postage and shipping.
This was first published in August 2006