With the impending implementation of the GDPR (https://www.eolitservices.co.uk/environment-and-csr/eu-gdpr/) any potential data security mistake could have far-reaching consequences for your business. In our latest article on the subject of data security, we take a look at 5 common data security mistakes that must be avoided at all costs.
Neglecting Two-Factor Authentication
Two-factor authentication is one of the most simple, yet commonly overlooked ways, of protecting your data. It means that hackers cannot simply access your company data with one password as a code will be texted or phoned through to the mobile number connected to that particular account. All major business platforms now offer this two-factor authentication, so there is no excuse not to implement it on all of your password-protected accounts. Password breaches are becoming more and more common and this is one of the most simple (and free) ways to protect your data.
Failure to Distinguish Between Personal and Professional Devices
Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) is undeniably useful for businesses but it is vital that you have the correct security plan in place for this. You need to be sure that your employees are taking effective steps to protect their own devices from potential hackers, as well as developing a way of ensuring that this information can be properly erased from these devices when an employee leaves your company, which may require help from your legal team. If you cannot be certain that your data is safe on these devices whilst the individual is employed by you, and after they have left, then you should consider whether the benefits of BYOD are worth the risk.
Data Security Mistakes – Thinking Compliant Means Secure
There are a number of different security regulations in place to protect business data and with the GDPR set to be introduced in 2018 there is more pressure than ever to comply. However, just because you are compliant with regulations is not to say your data is necessarily secure. You can do the base minimum to comply with a regulation, but this doesn’t mean you are considering the specific needs and requirements of your business so that all aspects of your data use and storage are protected. It is important to remember that regulations are set for businesses in general and you must consider your business as individual, with a particular set of requirements.
Failure to Encrypt Data
End-to-end encryption is another relatively simple, yet commonly forgotten data security practice. Protecting your data from its very source and at every other point that it is stored throughout its life, is a vital part of keeping it safe. This means that even if a company device (from a computer, to hard drive, to USB) were stolen, your data would not be at risk. Information should be encrypted with secure passwords that are kept completely separate from the data they are protecting.
Worrying About Cost
It goes without saying that the bottom line influences a businesses every move but you should not be put off taking the appropriate steps to protect your business data. Though security audits can be costly, you should view them as an investment; a way of tightening your company’s security to avoid any fines or reputational damage that might arise should you fall victim to a data breach.
It takes time and experience to know exactly what works when it comes to effectively protecting your company data. The most important thing is that all of your employees are trained and aware of your data security strategy and should be aware of the importance of avoiding these data security mistakes.