Don’t Breach My Data

Lauren Engelbrecht
Editor United States Cybersecurity Magazine

In this day and age, there’s always news reports of the latest big data breach. We had the HBO breach for the original series Game of Thrones, there was the Equifax breach, Target, and YAHOO! All big name companies placed in the public eye for the confidential (and sensitive!) data that has been stolen, or compromised by bad actors. Smaller named companies are not exempt from breaches and attacks.

How can we be more efficiently cybersafe and thwart these malicious actors?

These hackers can’t access what you do not have. When it comes to collecting and storing information, less is more. Be mindful on the information (and amount of) you store on your computer and within your files. Reduce the amount of places you store information and data, personal and public alike. It makes it easier to know where you keep the data, and what the data contains.

GUARD YOUR DATA! Take necessary precautions for sensitive data. Implement strong password security into your workplace and lock private information and files. Grant access only to those whom MUST have access, and keep a detailed record of whoever accesses the sensitive data.

Done? Destroy! Before you discard any files, be sure to shred them. Any portable media should be destroyed too (i.e. DVD’s, CD’s). Using the copier? Use the clear data setting after each use. If you’re destroying files, or hard drives, use software that is designed to permanently wipe the drive, or delete the files. Or simply, completely (and physically) destroy the drive.

Keep your employees educated. Compose written policies about data security and privacy. Keep employees “in the know” about what information is sensitive, and what they must do to protect the sensitive data.

Let’s keep it professional. Keep the usage of computers to the business. Ban the use of any outside websites, and block the usage of any software not approved by the company.

Are you up-to-date? Stay on top of software maintenance of firewalls, anti-spyware and anti-virus on a daily basis. Run updates and check the home website of the software for any alarming vulnerabilities or patches.

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Encrypt it! Use encrypted email for your company. Make sure your Wi-Fi network doesn’t permit any interceptions of data, and if they do, avoid using the Wi-Fi.

Standards for all. If you use a third-party, or a vendor, be clear of all your security requirements up front. Be sure your company maintains control of data.

Be proactive in your fight against data breaches from malicious actors. Protect your data.

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