Of the 621 confirmed data breach incidents Verizon recorded in 2012, close to half occurred at companies with fewer than 1,000 employees, including 193 incidents at entities with fewer than 100 workers. Because security measures often aren’t as sophisticated as larger companies, small businesses are easy targets for cyber terrorists.
With so much of our personal and corporate data stored on electronic devices connected to the internet, cyber security is of the utmost importance. Last week Michael Daniel, the White House’s cyber security coordinator, urged americans to address our nation’s growing cyber threat. Some cyber security experts warn that Target’s infamous data breach is only the beginning. Michaels is currently investigating a potential breach, and Yahoo as well. Additionally, White Lodging, a company that maintains Hilton, Weston, Sheraton and Mariott hotels just suffered a data breach which exposed guests credit and debit card information. If these massive corporations can’t keep cyber terrorists out, how can you? Now is the time to think about your company’s data security needs.
The spreading of malware that can penetrate your confidential digital files threatens both your clients’ and your company’s data. In order for companies to reduce the risk of a data breach and keep their client’s data secure, organizations must implement a data security plan of action. If your organization doesn’t have one in place, download our free Data Security Checklist.
Here are 5 tips to protect your organization from a data security breach:
- Always make sure your customer data is stored in an encrypted database.
- Develop an organization-wide data security plan.
- Even when away from the office, require employees to follow a sensitive data protocol. Do some employees work from home? Is sensitive data scattered across various devices? Make it clear how sensitive should be handled and make sure all employees are aware of this policy.
- Remove unnecessary data from your electronic devices and keep tabs on what data remains.
- Hire professionals to completely clear all electronics of unnecessary sensitive data.
- When upgrading or disposing of devices with sensitive data, contact a professional for physical destruction of the data-containing component of the device. Deleting files from your hard drive isn’t enough. Data can still be recovered if not correctly destroyed.
To learn more about steps you can take to reduce the risk of a data breach, read about out our data destruction services.