December is the ideal month to prepare an action plan and set goals for the upcoming year. Whether it involves getting your financial books in order or setting a new budget, proper year-end planning helps your business sail smoothly into 2019. While planning, don’t overlook your data security strategy. Although major corporate data breaches grab headlines, thousands of small businesses are breached every year. Now is time to address your vulnerabilities and put a protection plan in place. In this blog, we offer five tips for protecting your data in 2019.
1. Back Up Your Data
Your data can be stolen in an instant with malicious email or ransomware. Regularly back up every device in your company so if data is stolen or unexpectedly lost, it can be recovered. Make sure to have a protection plan for your backup media as well. Data protection experts suggest partnering with a media rotation and archiving service provider, so your backup media is protected from theft and disasters offsite. Your media is rotated based on your backup schedule, so tapes are cycled back to you as needed.
2. Safeguard Your Documents
Cyberattacks targeting small businesses are on the rise, but so are low-tech insider breaches. If you store confidential documents in boxes or file cabinets, consider taking a different approach. A reputable records storage service eliminates unauthorized access to documents and files. Your records are transferred to a secure records center. All boxes are tracked with unique barcodes and managed by background-screened professionals. 24/7 security monitoring protects your documents. There’s no safer place to store client files, employee records, and financial information; plus, offsite records storage is much more cost-effective than storing documents in house.
3. Shred Expired Records
The expired records you’ve held on to for months or years are a big security risk, especially if they contain personally identifiable information (PII) or sensitive financial data. Take care when discarding them. Since bulk purges can take days or weeks with an office shredder, creating an unnecessary data breach risk, invest in a one-time shred service.Your documents are picked up from your office by a screened professional and transported to a shredding plant for secure shredding. After shredding, you receive a Certificate of Destruction to prove your compliance with state and federal privacy laws.
4. Set up a VPN
Cybercriminals prey on weak corporate Wi-Fi networks. Set up a Virtual Private Network (VPN) for secure, remote access to your network, and make sure it’s protected with a strong password and WPA-2 encryption.
5. Organize a Team
Data security isn’t just IT’s responsibility—it’s everyone’s responsibility. The more your employees understand data security risks and know how to prevent threats, the more secure your business will be. Offer regular data security awareness training sessions to keep your staff informed.
For more data security tips, please contact us by phone or complete the form on this page.
American Document Securities provides records storage, data protection and document shredding services for businesses in Atlanta and Northeast Georgia.