On account of the fact that the average consolidated total cost of a data breach is $3.8 million according to IBM, more and more businesses are beefing up their security to discourage criminals from committing fraud. But regardless of whether you use physical devices or virtual servers in the cloud to store essential files and folders, have you ever asked yourself “how safe is my data?”
Here to provide some insights and answers is ProNetwork Solutions, an IT consultancy based in Northern Ireland that specialises in security solutions and disaster recovery plans.
Data Stored on Physical Devices
Even though the most high-profile hacking incidents of recent years have occurred online, businesses that store important information on physical devices should also adopt a steadfast approach to data security. After all, if company computers, laptops, or external hard drives fall into the wrong hands, data could be used maliciously or lost forever.
Then again, natural disasters such as a flood or fire could destroy your organisation’s server, which invariably holds crucial information. You should also consider the possibility of failed hardware, like a broken hard disk, which is more likely with older devices that keep getting used.
So, even if you haven’t seen or read many news stories concerning compromised hard drive data, this doesn’t mean to say that it isn’t a real and serious problem.
Data Stored in the Cloud
The vast majority of modern-day data breaches will take place online, with hackers targeting information stored in the cloud. But while cloud providers do everything they can to secure data, you also have a responsibility to manage risks as well.
This includes ensuring effective governance, risk and compliance processes exist, auditing operational and business processes, enforcing privacy policies and protection information, assessing the security provisions for cloud applications, and evaluating controls on physical infrastructure.
Even so, offenders will try and access confidential or sensitive data through a variety of different techniques, from non-technical types of intrusion like phishing to bombarding a website’s servers through Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks.
Additional Threats to Data
Along with the growing presence of cyber criminals and dangers out of your control, threats to data can also exist closer to home as well. There is a chance that members of staff might change or erase data accidently. Although this can be addressed with software featuring undo or rollback functions, human error is always somewhat inevitable.
Then again, disgruntled employees with access to company data could also copy or delete information and sell to a competitor. This scenario might not be very likely, but with access control it can never be a possibility.
To alleviate data breach risks, you should consider storing mission-critical data on a central server in a single place. If this utilises cloud-technology, ask your provider what security measures they have in place and how you can boost defences against cyber criminals. You should also make sure everyone in your business understands the importance of data protection and have a clearly defined policy about this subject.