One of the worst things that can happen to any business is a loss of data. If your business loses certain data, it could mean certain disaster, because you could be losing customer information, employee information, and a whole lot more. Not only is your data lost, but there is also a chance that it is lost because it has been stolen, and now someone else has access to all of this sensitive information. Luckily, there are several things that you can do in order to protect your business from data loss. We have compiled a list of seven tips that you can use to protect your business data.
1. Dispose of Sensitive Data
It is important that you make sure to get rid of sensitive data when it is no longer needed. This information could still fall into the wrong hands, and be detrimental to your business. Shred all documents that contain sensitive information before recycling, and remove all data from all electronic devices, including computers, tablets, smartphones, and external storage devices.
2. Use Password Protection
Hackers are always searching for passwords, so you need to be vigilant about protecting yours. Be sure to password-protect all of the computers in your business, including laptops and smartphones, and password-protect access to the network and accounts. Make it mandatory for employees to change default passwords to strong ones that are complex and have a good variety of characters.
3. Use Malware Protection
There are always going to be spyware and viruses, so you need to protect your business computers. You will need to install software that protects you against this malware, which can be installed on computers without your knowledge. All it takes is for one person to use a device that has malware to infect your network, and then all of your business information is out there for that person to see and use.
4. Use Data Protection Software
It is important that you take advantage of data protection software that can keep your sensitive information out of the wrong hands. These tools include cloud disaster recovery solutions, firewalls, virtual private networks, antivirus software, etc., and they will go a long way in protecting your sensitive business data, which often includes personal data about employees, clients, and customers.
5. Use Data Encryption
Any device that is used for your business should be protected with data encryption. This includes computers, laptops, smartphones, tablets, and even apps that employees use on the network. There are different ways to encrypt data, including over-the-air encryption and a Secure Sockets Layer (SSL). When data is encrypted, the only people who can access it are those who have been given specific authorization to do so.
6. Create Access Levels
Your IT team should set access levels for data that employees can use to access data within the network. Make sure that a good confidentiality policy is in place for employees. This will restrict their use of company data and prevent sharing it to outsiders. They must sign the agreement at the beginning of their employment, and you must inform them of the consequences of breaking the policy.
7. Create a Backup
It is always important to create a backup plan in the event that confidential data is compromised. You should always have a backup of all of your data that is stored in a safe location that is separate from your network. In many cases, backup files are stored offsite, in case of burglaries, natural disasters, etc. You should also update data frequently, as well as do testing of data every so often to make sure that it is accurate and can be viewed.