Handling data, both about the company and its customers, is one of the biggest challenges that businesses face these days. In recent months, especially in the wake of the Facebook data scandal, we’ve started to rethink how we deal with personal information. The laws are being updated as the risk of cyber-crime increases and businesses are being held accountable for any breaches. You’ll find yourself in big trouble if you lose customer data because it’s likely to become a very public scandal and people won’t trust you in the future, meaning that you’ll lose a lot of custom. Security technology evolves all the time and criminals update their methods to keep up so it’s often difficult to know whether you’re handling data correctly. You could easily be making one of these data mistakes without even realising it.
Forgetting About Hard Copies
Most of our data is held in digital format these days so it’s important that you focus on cyber-security etc. but that doesn’t mean you should forget about good old fashioned paper. People are often so preoccupied with securing their digital data that they forget about the hard copies around the office. Important information on paper can easily get lost or even worse, stolen from the office so you need to make sure that you file it properly and keep it secured. Any older data that you don’t need any more needs to be taken to a local document shredding facility to be destroyed safely. As long as you dispose of it properly, that data can never fall into the wrong hands.
Not Monitoring Access
The more people that have access to data and the more devices it’s viewed on, the higher the chance of a breach is. That’s why you need to make sure that only people who actually need it have access to sensitive data. If you’re not monitoring who has access and employees are emailing things around one another, you’re opening yourself up to risks. Not knowing exactly who has access to data also causes a lot of problems if you do fall victim to a cyber-attack. The most important thing in the wake of an attack is identifying where the breach is and taking steps to bolster security. If you can’t work out where the breach came from because you don’t know which computers the data is stored on, you’re going to struggle.
Not Training Staff
It’s all well and good being conscious about data protection but it’s your staff that will be handling the data day to day. That’s why it’s vital that you train staff properly when it comes to data protection. Make sure that they know to only access sensitive data on work computers and not on their own personal devices and have a clear idea of who should have access to it and who shouldn’t. Always make sure that you’re giving them a refresher course when you update security systems so everybody is up to date.
If you make any one of these mistakes, you’re massively increasing the risk of a data breach which could cripple your company.
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