Ways to keep customer data secure

Cyber crime is a serious concern for business owners. Recently IBM Chair, CEO, and President, Ginni Rometty, called it “the greatest threat to every company in the world.” According to Juniper Research, by 2019 cyber crime will cost businesses a staggering $2 trillion.

It is impossible to put a dollar value on what your customer data is worth – or the cost to your business should sensitive data be compromised by theft or loss. For many small companies, a security breach could simply mean the end of their firm.

If you do not already have a data security plan in place, these tips will help you take steps to prevent a devastating loss.

Protect your company’s information assets


Given what’s at stake, every company should prepare a data security plan that identifies their information assets – that is, hardware that stores private customer and employee information. Your plan should also outline potential threats to keeping information assets safe, and strategies to protect them.

Your information assets may include:

  • ·         computers
  • ·         tablets
  • ·         mobile phones
  • ·         servers
  • ·         USB keys
  • ·         fax machines
  • ·         employee devices used for work

In addition to inventorying information assets with descriptions and serial numbers, your security plan should outline your strategy for protecting data by asset, prioritized by severity of loss in a security breach.

This free cybersecurity self-assessment can help you determine the strength of your internal cybersecurity processes – a useful starting point to develop your company’s security plan.

Move to cloud-based storage


Storing company data in the cloud is one way to minimize the risk of customer data loss by keeping sensitive information off devices.

Cloud storage providers offer secured data centers, encryption, and authentication for your company data, as well as trained professionals working around the clock to keep your data safe from cyber attack.

 

Patricia Cuchiaro