Every business, from the smallest startup to the largest multinational firm, generates and collects data. As companies continue to prefer cloud-based platforms and integrated workflows, this data has become more business-critical and less secure than ever before. In the modern work landscape, it is imperative that business owners and stakeholders have a firm focus on data privacy and security. The most important concepts to internalize when considering how data security applies to your business are risk assessment and threat management, compliance with data protection regulations, and data handling and employee awareness.
Risk Assessment and Threat Management
Risk assessment and threat management is the concept of analyzing each one of your business' data assets to understand where your data is most vulnerable and the impact of any data breach, and then determining how to best manage said risk. For example, if you have sensitive client data in a trusted secure software, a point of high vulnerability could be an integration with a less trusted software, where it would be critical to understand how much of the sensitive data the integration has access to and the security policies of that less known software. By explicitly determining the risks involved with all of your data assets, you can prioritize managing the threats to your most critical data.
Compliance with Data Protection Regulations
If your company houses sensitive data of your clients, it is imperative to understand modern data regulations and how to comply with them. Policies such as the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) have laid out guidelines and restrictions on how to manage business-critical data, and following these restrictions is key to avoid litigation or reputational damage when working with private information. By knowing and following these policies, companies can guarantee legal and business security to their clients while storing their data.
Data Handling and Employee Awareness
Data handling and employee awareness are perhaps the most important of these data security concepts in the day-to-day workflow of a modern business. Employees handle sensitive data on a regular basis and provide a greater risk over software when it comes to data being leaked or mishandled. It is critical that any business handling sensitive data has policies in place for everything from role-based security to password management and protection, and programs in place to make employees aware of the dangers of practicing poor data security in the modern web and cloud focused business landscape. By promoting education and policies on data security to the employees of your business, you can greatly strengthen the data security of both client and internal sensitive data.
Data security may not seem to be a priority for a quickly growing modern business, but it is actually the foundation of sound business practice and the cloud-based modern landscape. By prioritizing and internalizing these principles of data security, businesses can achieve peace of mind when working with sensitive data and provide the most secure experiences to their clients.