Data breaches have become increasingly more prevalent over the years. The problem is most organizations may think their data is secure, when in reality it’s not actually being taken seriously. Additionally, companies know they need to take data security more seriously, but maybe don’t know where to start. So how can you prevent a data breach from happening at your company? Below we discuss the most critical methods to implement in order to prevent data breaches from occurring.
Limit Access to Valuable Data
While every role at an organization is important, there should be limitations on which staff members actually need access to certain data. When you limit who is allowed to view certain files, you reduce the pool of users who might actually click on a harmful link, or mishandle the data contained. Only those who specifically need access to important data files should be given credentials.
Similarly, organizations should regularly take inventory of data that is being collected, and retain only what is necessary. By keeping the volume of information you collect slimmed down, you can better prevent malicious actors from accessing a large pool of data that they can manipulate.
Conduct Employee Security Awareness Training
A large majority of data breaches actually occur due to human error. Unfortunately, employees tend to be the weakest links when it comes to data security (to no fault of their own). Employees who have not been trained on basic cyber hygiene practices are likely to not recognize a suspicious email or file, and can end up downloading viruses.
Its important employees are also up to speed on:
- Treating all devices (laptops, cellphones, tablets, desktops) as being capable of accessing the organization’s systems
- Always use complex passwords, and never write them down or leave a record where others can easily find them
- Be extra careful of phone calls or emails from unverified people
Update Software Regularly
All application software and operating systems at your organization should be updated regularly. When programs aren’t patched up and updated, they are more vulnerable to attacks as the software cannot recognize malicious activity.
Compliance of Third-Party Vendors
Any outside vendors who have access to sensitive information from your organization must be held to the same standards. Your vendors should be on the same page when it comes to security regulations as working with a less-than-reputable third-party vendor can increase your risk of data breaches and lawsuits. Be sure to work with reputable vendors that are transparent about their security measures.
Implement the NIST Framework
Many organizations trying to strengthen their cyber security efforts have adopted the NIST cyber security framework. This provides organizations a better understanding of cyber security practices, and how to mitigate day-to-day risks. The NIST framework allow organizations to analyze what activities are most critical within the company and ensure proper resources are allocated to protect them.
A data breach can cause catastrophic effects to an organization, so taking the necessary steps to secure your company is critical to your productivity, reputation, and safeguarding your client relations.
If you’re looking to improve your organization’s cyber security strategy, sign up with Kyber Security and get started today.
Here at Kyber security, we can help you establish a detailed cyber security plan, security training, and awareness, enact a comprehensive cybersecurity policy, and initiate and maintain a reporting system for cybersecurity events.