How to create a Data Retrieval Task

How to create a Data Retrieval Tasklink

Data Retrieval tasks are where you manage the collection of data with the Ascema system into a repository. A Data Retrieval task lets you define the sensitive data that you require and where to search for that data. In order to be able to create a Data Retrieval Task you must have a user account and be logged in to the Ascema Endpoint manager. See How to manage Ascema user accounts.

Creating a new Retrieval Tasklink

  • From the menu bar expand the Search option

The process of retrieval, refinement and download of data starts with setting up a Data Retrieval task.

  • From the search options select Create New Task
  • A list of search targets will be displayed
  • From this list select which targets this retrieval task should apply to when run
  • Select Next to proceed.
  • The Create a new Retrieval Task wizard will be displayed
  • Each section of the wizard can be opened or you can take it step by step using the Next buttons
  • The yellow X indicates sections which have not yet been completed
  • The dynamic help text indicates which sections will need to be completed
  • The Create New Retrieval Task button will not be enabled until all required sections are completed

Task Settingslink

  • Give your retrieval Task a unique and meaningful name to help you manage it - this name will also appear on end user reports so a clear and informative name will be best
  • The task priority will be passed to the agent as an indicator of how urgent the task is and how much system resource it should request. Leave it at the default value for this example
  • Select a location for the repository where the retrieved data will be stored
  • When this stage of the wizard is complete select the Next button

  • The completed first part of the wizard now looks like this

  • The green tick in the top right corner of this panel indicates that this section has been completed.
  • Select Next to proceed to the next stage of the wizard


The Browse Manager button will open your browser file dialog to help you choose another location for the repository if the default is not suited to your needs. This directory can be in any location accessible to your manager, including mounted network or cloud drives. You should ensure that this location is suitably secure for the nature and sensitivity of the data you are planning to retrieve.

Preset patternslink

  • Preset patterns are common patterns for sensitive data built into the Ascema system.
  • Some preset patterns are of Global scope
  • Most preset patterns are for data which is specific to certain countries
  • National Insurance Number originates in the United Kingdom so select that row of the table
  • Select National Insurance Number from the United Kingdom set of patterns


Additional search patterns may be added to a search. An item which is found to match any of the patterns will be reported and optionally alerted to the user.

  • The green tick in the top right corner of this panel indicates that this section has been completed.
  • Click on the Preset Patterns header to close the pattern picker
  • The status of the wizard has been updated to reflect that you now have settings and patterns
  • The dynamic help now shows that only Filters now require completing
  • Select Custom Patterns to view your options
  • For this example we will not set a custom pattern
  • Select Next to proceed to the next stage of the wizard

Pattern Settingslink

  • For each pattern you have selected you can change the confidence level the search should apply
    • Higher confidence will apply additional checks such as nearby text words
    • Lower confidence will find more matches which will include accidental or false matches
  • For each pattern you have selected you can set a minimum number of matches per file before it is reported
  • If you have multiple patterns there are convenience options to change all confidence levels or set all minimum matches at once
  • For this example leave the default values as they are
  • Select Next to proceed to the next stage of the wizard

Setting Search filterslink

  • The filter stage of the wizard is where you can define a series of filters to define where Ascema will search for the data to retrieve

  • By file type: from the list of file types seen here or from additional file types you define for yourself

  • By file created or modified date: to include only files which have been created or modified within defined date ranges
  • By folder type: whether to include hidden or system folders in the search
  • To select a file type simply click the checkbox next to the description.
  • The Select all option will cause the search to look through all files of all types, searches with this option will take longer to complete
  • To look for data in text documents you can select a set of file types as shown here
  • As highlighted here a tooltip will appear to display the exact file extensions which will be recognised as the file type
  • As you can see by default Ascema will search for all files regardless of creation or modified date
  • Leave these defaults as they are


The dates on this filter are inclusive - so for example if you set a Modified After date of 2015-01-01 then a file which had been modified on that date would be included in the search and any sensitive data in it would be alerted.

  • By default the Ascema system will not search in hidden folders or system folders - folders where typical end users would not keep data.
  • The search can be set to search in these areas by clicking on the checkboxes to set them
  • Searches which include these areas will take longer to run
  • For this example leave these defaults as they are.

Saving the Retrieval Tasklink

  • All sections of the wizard have now been completed
  • The dynamic help text is no longer displayed as no items remain outstanding
  • The Create New Retrieval Task button is now enabled
  • You may click on any of the section headings to review the entries you have made for this Search Task
  • When you have reviewed the entries select Create New Retrieval Task
  • The Retrieval task summary dialog will be displayed
  • Review the details of the Retrieval Task
  • When you are satisfied that the task is what you intend select the Create new Retrieval Task button

The wizard is now complete and the Data Retrieval Task will be created.