Every business needs to think about the risk of data loss. Even the smallest ones have a customer and financial information that has to stay out of the wrong hands. Many have records that could lead to identity theft if they’re stolen. A business needs a plan and a policy to prevent data loss. It has to include these steps:

Perform a risk analysis

Some information is especially sensitive, and managers have to concentrate their efforts on protecting it. A risk analysis will identify the information that most needs protection. It will identify areas that are vulnerable, such as unencrypted databases with weak access control. A prioritized list of assets at risk will provide the basis for a strategy.

Identify data movement

The biggest risks come when data is carelessly moved from one place to another. Weakly protected intermediate storage provides thieves with a prime opportunity. Moving unencrypted data over the Internet leaves it open to interception. If the information isn’t wiped clean after transferring, those intermediate points create a lingering risk. Transfer of sensitive data should always use a secure channel.

Grant access conservatively

People should be granted access to data only if they need it. Even people who are completely trustworthy can find their accounts have been compromised. The less an intruder can do with any given account, the more limited the damage will be. Role-based access tailors privileges to people’s jobs.

Train employees

Most data loss is due at least in part to employee error. Creating weak passwords, responding to a phishing scam, and saving insecure copies of data are just some of the mistakes that can lead to serious data breaches. Employees need to develop habits of treating their accounts and the data they handle carefully.

Get expert help

Bluwater Technologies provides managed IT services that will help you to keep your data safe. Our experts will help you to identify the sources of risk in your network and find the best ways to prevent data loss. Contact us to learn how we can help your business.

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