One of the biggest concerns facing many businesses in today’s modern world is how to protect their data. That could mean internal business data, or customer data.
It’s becoming increasingly challenging for even small businesses to keep their data safe from hackers, and a breach can represent significant financial impact to a company in many cases, as well as damage to their brand.
So what are easy, manageable ways even very small businesses can make sure their data is safe?
Set Standards For Remote Employees
It’s common for employees to work remotely some, or all of the time. Even small businesses may have freelancers and contract employees working across the country or the globe, and that means information and data are likely to be shared and exchanged.
Make sure that if you have any remote employees, you have a clearly defined policy for how data and information are to be handled and protected. Make sure each and every employee is clear on the standards and how they’re required to adhere to them.
Create Guidelines for Social Media Usage
The use of social media is one of the top ways many businesses put their data at risk, yet company leaders and employees are unaware of these risks. To avoid having your employees putting data in jeopardy, outline a social media policy. You may even consider a ban on social media to be absolutely sure data isn’t being put at risk.
Restrict access to data as much as possible. Every employee should only have access to the data that is absolutely essential to their job. If it’s not critical to their job role, don’t give them access. Often businesses can get themselves into a bad data situation simply by having too many employees with access to too much data, and yet it’s an easy fix.
Use a Virtual Data Room
In today’s business world, there’s significant sharing of potential private and sensitive documents and information. This could mean sharing between co-workers, or sharing between businesses, as well as sharing with clients. This leaves data at a high level of risk.
Avoid this by using a Firmex virtual data room, which is a cloud-based, highly secure way to maintain and share things like documents, without the risk that comes from emailing them. Virtual data rooms have the same level of security as what’s seen at a bank or financial institution, and good data room products will have features like two-factor password authentication and 256-bit AES/TSL encryption.
Wipe Devices When Employees Leave
Employees will frequently use their own devices for work, including cell phones, tablets, and computers. Unfortunately, when they leave a company, there’s often no policy in place for how data is dealt with Consider how to handle the wiping of sensitive data from employee devices when they leave the company.
The Importance of Protecting Data
Data is one of the most important aspects of your business. From proprietary information to customer data, you can’t afford not to do your best to protect it. The five tips above are simple, actionable ways to strengthen your data protection strategy and your business.