How can Companies Enforce Data Privacy

No matter the size of the firm, data protection has become a critical component of all corporate plans

It is now required by law in several nations. Several rights are granted to data subjects by data protection laws like the EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA), which regulate the gathering, processing, and storage of personally identifiable information (PII) like names, addresses, and phone numbers.

According to IBM and the Ponemon Institute’s Cost of a Data Breach Report 2021, which was published in 2021, the average cost of a data breach throughout the world increased by 10% to $4.24 million. The rise in price was brought on by higher regulatory fines as well as the effects of remote work during the pandemic.

The methods used by hackers to carry out cyberattacks have also advanced. Nowadays, it’s simpler to penetrate a network and disseminate malware and ransomware via phishing and social engineering techniques. Cybercriminals just need to steal someone’s identity, deceive workers into sharing credentials, or click a malicious link or file to obtain access to a work laptop. They may quickly infect the entire network once inside.

Due to the fact that large corporations have developed and tested their security procedures over the past few years, they frequently have a significant advantage in the data protection game. However, they also have more complicated criteria. In addition to protecting client information, many of them also need to safeguard financial and intellectual property data. Let’s examine the most effective techniques for securing business data and safeguarding data within a company.

Educating All Employees

In the chain of data protection, the human element frequently poses the greatest risk. By offering training and specific instructions for individuals interacting with the most sensitive data kinds, large organizations make sure that staff are aware of compliance requirements and best security procedures.

Due to their high-level access to data, C-level executives are routinely targeted by malevolent outsiders. Big businesses take extra effort to ensure that upper management abides by the laws since maintaining the same degree of data security across the board, both horizontally and vertically, is crucial.

Knowing Where Data is Going

Knowing precisely which data is being stored and where is one of the most important stages towards effective data protection. Companies may decide on the safeguards they need to take for their data by precisely recognizing the lifespan of that data and the security threats attached to it.

To search business networks for sensitive data, large firms employ data loss prevention solutions. They can choose to delete or encrypt it if they discover it in illegal places. Transparency is essential in the era of data protection legislation for both ensuring compliance and developing strong data protection practices.

Minimize the Amount of Data You Keep

Less data equals less chances for the bad guys to exploit. Only gather and keep the minimal amount of data required for the intended goals. Only the amount of time required to finish any planned activities should be used to keep any personally identifiable information. Collecting only the necessary data at the beginning of data collection is an excellent practice. Scrub data sets to delete certain data fields if more personal information is not required for the intended use of the information being gathered.

Longer-term storage of personal data raises the possibility of a data breach, should one ever occur. We lessen the chance of identity theft and fraud by storing only the bare minimum amount of data.

Organizations will need a holistic approach to their data privacy strategy — considering all aspects of people, process, and technology to stay ahead of the evolving threat landscape.

Cybersecurity workshops should be conducted regularly to educate employees about their responsibilities in safeguarding themselves and the organization against the latest cyber threats. A Zero Trust approach is also highly recommended, to ensure all users, devices and applications are continuously authenticated and authorized. Organizations should also have a clear process for responding to data breaches, complemented by technologies such as AI/ML to predict, identify, and prevent malicious threats more proactively and effectively.

– David Chan, Managing Director, Singapore, Adnovum

Trifecta of Controls

To protect personal information, implement a trinity of physical, technological, and administrative measures. These measures are designed to lessen the danger of unauthorized access as well as the risk of data loss, damage, or change.

Even though it may seem impossible, a straightforward compromise might begin with physical access on the bottom floor. These security breaches sometimes involve unauthorized access to papers that were saved; maybe files were unintentionally left on a printer or in an unsecured cabinet. Alternately, a shady worker may have discovered a means to observe how other team members type their credentials into crucial systems in order to get access. Mother Nature can also be a factor in this since a natural disaster may impair the physical infrastructure’s integrity.

To reduce these hazards, physical controls are implemented. Simple yet powerful techniques are;

  • putting physical disks and papers in secure rooms or cupboards,
  • encouraging staff to lock their PCs as frequently as possible,
  • establishing access limitations for workers at various places.

Consider using software and other technologies that handle encryption and multi-factor authentication to build technological safeguards to reduce risks. Finally, put in place administrative controls that make use of staff training, rules, and procedures to make sure best practices are being followed.

Creating Bring Your Own Device Policies

Businesses frequently overlook the security implications of Bring-your-own-device (BYOD) policies when they adopt them in an effort to boost productivity and cut expenses. When sensitive data is accessed on personal devices, it leaves the business network and is no longer protected by the security measures that were put in place.

The type of data that can be shared outside of business devices is restricted in large enterprises. Device control policies can be implemented at the same time to make sure that only devices that adhere to a specified degree of security are trusted. Employees have the choice to match the level of security on their own devices to that required by the business in this way. It ensures that no sensitive data is permitted to be shared if they decide not to use them.

Organizations must be proactive as security threats grow in volume and complexity and rules continue to change. It is crucial to give information security and privacy policies, practices, and initiatives top priority in order to protect data throughout the company and during its lifespan. Your firm may lower its risks by using these data privacy best practices.