How to protect your company data
It has been repeatedly said that the world’s most valuable resource is not oil anymore, but data. This is why one of the most important things that a company can do today, is to protect their data. But how is this done?
Start at the very beginning
Right at the beginning of hiring a potential, future employee, make sure robust background checks have been carried out on the individual. If the employee has been in any trouble to do with data or theft, then you know that he or she could be a danger to the organisation. In addition to this check, make sure that the employee understands what is regarded at work in terms of data protection. After all, how can you expect them to know if you haven’t taught them?
As mentioned above, teaching your staff to protect company data is essential. Have regular training for your staff, either from an internal or external expert. This is vital for protection, not just at the start of an employee’s time at a company, but also for the employees who have been there for years and may have forgotten. Here at NetPay, Andrew Frewing-House, from our Learning and Development team ensures that all new members of staff are trained in the important areas that are essential to NetPay, including data protection.
Andrew says ”Being aware of data protection and PCI compliance minimizes the chances of data breaches which may incur large fines and loss of reputation.”
One of the easiest ways for an unauthorised user to steal data is through the employee’s computer. In alignment with the EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) 2018, organisations should now all follow their recommendations to protect data. This includes e.g. the good practice that mobile phones should not be allowed at desks and employees should lock their computer screens when leaving their desks. If an employee locks their screen, then this means that an unauthorised user would then be given the additional challenge of having to know the username and password of the computer, instead of just being able to go on the computer and take what they want.
Create a Secure Work Environment
It will be very hard to find an employee who is purposely making data protection mistakes. This is because of the criminal record they will obtain if caught, and the knowledge that they will most likely struggle greatly to get a new job when fired. With this knowledge, try to prevent these data mistakes from happening in the first place. This can be done by teaching employees to prompt their work colleagues to do the correct thing if they see them making an unknowing mistake (i.e., writing their passwords on a post-it note and sticking it to the computer monitor).
This will encourage a positive work environment, bringing together employees who will support each other and protect company data at the same time.
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