Whether small or large, a business faces grave consequences of long-term harm in case of a data breach. The loss of revenue and potential liability is only one part; the extended recovery period ensures that the security measures and systems are back in order is the larger damage. Despite a hefty price tag and high frequency of these breaches, most businesses remain vulnerable to attacks, quite unprepared due to a lack of information about cybersecurity and data breaches. These are three easy tips to be better informed and keep your business data protected:
Know where your most sensitive data is stored
According to a Ponemon study sponsored by Informatica, more than 25% of security professionals are unaware of where their organization’s most sensitive structured data is stored, with over 60% having minimal knowledge about this data.
When security professionals aren’t aware of the sensitive data and cannot identify the data location, the risk lingering increases; only when they recognize the data’s location can they determine through a risk assessment what will best sure up potential security loopholes. Moreover, a thorough backup strategy never fails to minimize your loss in case of a data breach.
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Hence, you should create a spreadsheet to document the types of sensitive data your business is handling and its location. You must update and review this spreadsheet at regular intervals to ensure that the information remains updated.
Ensure Third Party Vendors are secure
For payroll, shipping, and many other aspects of operations, many businesses tend to rely on third-party vendors. Your business and sensitive data could be at risk in case of security vulnerabilities within these third-party vendors.
You must adhere to Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) if your business accepts credit card transactions. PCI compliant companies protect not just the customer but also the business. Consider a contract with the vendors to ensure that they have adopted minimal security requirements and maintain communication with them regarding their data security practices.
Train your employees
Most of the data breaches are mostly accidental mistakes and not theft or intentional sabotage. It is thus true to say that the weakest link in data security for businesses is the employees. For the data to be safe, the employees need to be imparted with training to select appropriate and strong passwords, know when the data should be encrypted, and know-how malware is avoided.
With most businesses relying on just the orientation for the employee’s training, the businesses are keeping their data unsafe. Your employees must be trained properly and kept updated to handle such issues for your company’s data to be secure from data breaches and cyber threats.
Effective Data Breach Protection
Besides those listed, you could also consider other safeguards like never transmitting data that isn’t encrypted and using layered security.
However, even the best of safeguards cannot completely drive away from the risk of a data breach. Data breaches are costly; however, implementing these best practices will minimize the chances of a data breach and ensure that the impact of a possible data breach is minimal on your business. Moreover, you could also consider purchasing adequate data breach insurance to minimize the company’s costs in case of a data breach.