Data security is a major topic for businesses these days. While much attention is given to preventing a cyber breach, it is important that you don’t lose sight of the low-tech threats to your data as well. These can compromise your business and cause as much devastation as a cyber attack.
Physical threats are as prevalent and harmful as cyber threats. Confidential information can be easily taken if left unattended in a printer tray, photographed on computer monitors or transferred to a USB drive, or even just pocket a device. Here are some easy steps to take to reduce your risk:
- Lock up devices to prevent theft.
- Restrict access to printers and require swipe cards or other security before printing to limit pages in the print tray.
- Implement a USB port restriction policy or Data Leakage Prevention system.
- Be sure documents are kept in locked drawers and shredded before being discarded.
- Computer displays should be locked whenever they are not in use and accessed via password or other authentication.
Employees should also be reminded on how to keep data safe when they take devices or confidential documents off-site. Passwords, encryption, and other authentication can help keep your data safe.
Data loss can occur due to other factors as well. Fire, flood, and power surges can destroy your equipment and cause you to lose your files. Implementing a power protection protocol, using climate-controlled computer rooms, and safe fire suppression systems can help reduce your risk from these environmental factors. However, you should also back up your files regularly to be stored off-site for full protection against data loss due to environmental issues.
Backing up your files allows you to access them even after a loss – via theft or other cause. However, these must be done securely with encryption and authentication. Control access to your backup sites to be sure your files will be there when and if you need them.
There are many ways to lose your data, and they can all cause extensive harm to your business. By protecting against low-tech threats as well as cyber attacks, you can keep your business and your data safe.
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