Updated: Jun 18
“How do you secure your Company’s data?” is the key question that all businesses want to know. Whether is it from cyber attacks, data viruses, software failure or human error, securing one’s company’s information is of utmost priority to any business.
But hold your horses, before we get into the nitty gritty of how to maintain your data security, let me first start by telling you what Data Privacy is.
What is Data Privacy?
Data Privacy, or Information Privacy, refers to the balance between the utilisation of data as efficiently and elaborately as possible while protecting identifiable information from online targets.
Too-Chim-Don’t-Read? Basically, it means protecting your online data!
Data Security can thus be segmented into four different categories – physical security, electronic security, employee training and the security of related businesses. Each sector has its own risks and vulnerabilities that might cause a security breach of information. But the most vulnerable area would lie in the digital realm, where the exploits of vulnerabilities can be done from the comfort of one’s own home. Scary, right?
So why do you need to secure your company’s data?
As any CEO would be aware, data security and privacy is one of the most important parts of any company, especially in the digital age. Data flows to and from consumers and corporations continuously over long stretches of time. If data breaches do occur, not only do vital information become compromised, but the public backlash may be damning to the company. Remember the SingHealth Cyber Attack in 2018?
But do we know how to keep all of this data secure? Now, you might say that purchasing an application that backs up information is enough. But let me ask you this, is it truly enough for our current and future digital complexities in the marketplace?
Understanding data privacy may seem daunting, so here are some steps to understand the basics of information security.
Steps to maintain Data Security:
1. Stop hoarding. Start consolidating your data.
If you are a hoarder of toilet paper, you are most likely a hoarder of everything else too.
The first step is thus to know what data your company currently has within its databases. More often than not, employees channel their inner “kiasu-ness” and hoard information, be it contact data or personal particulars, in case it is needed at a later stage. This would cause the company to have a lot more data that the company possesses which are left unaccounted for.
The company should then sift through all of this data and identify what information one has, as well as the people that have access to this information into one repository.
2. Eliminate Unneeded Data
Do you happen to have that one piece of clothing that you know you will never wear for an everyday look but don’t have the heart to throw/give/donate away just in case you “might need it in the future” for an event or something? YES! Don’t do that anymore!
Next, the company should identify and keep only data that is required for the company to continue functioning. Unless there is a legitimate reason to keep information, such as client details or certain bank account numbers, discard the data. This is to make sure that, if the company does suffer from a computer breach, the information that was stolen could be identified instantaneously.
After unwanted data have been purged, the development of a records retention policy for all employees would be necessary to filter out information in the future.
3. Plan for the Worst
Lastly, the company should have a Business Contingency Plan for the event in which a data breach actually takes place. A response plan would help direct a response more efficiently and effectively when faced with a crisis. One would also need to prevent security threats proactively, through the use of anti-virus software, data encryption and firewalls.
Prevention is, after all, better than cure.
Big or Small, Security is a Must
“Regardless of race, language or religion”
It is obvious that data security is paramount in larger corporations, with the immense amount of data that each company has in its databases.
However, data protection is very important for any company, regardless of size, sector or industry. Although large companies might have dedicated departments for the archival and maintenance of data, small companies might not have the manpower to handle such tasks. The lack of man-hours might cause data security and privacy to fall to the wayside. At this point, in order to ensure the continuity of the business, IT support would prove to be vital by providing such services at a reasonable cost.