Reading about data breaches online can be confusing to some. It seems there is always a new way to pry sensitive information away from a business or consumer. And while that might be true, there are really only two times data can be stolen. It either has to be in transition or at rest.
Why is this important? Well, instead of trying to close every possible security gap, business leaders can focus on protection data in storage or in transit. This simplifies matters and makes the situation seem less daunting. Of course, the financial ravages of data breach can be assuaged with cyber risk insurance.
Cyber risk insurance helps organizations recovery from a data breach, investigate the occurrence, and handle any legal fees that might arise. Without this essential service, many small businesses would crumble under the financial burden. Don't foot the bill yourself. Invest in cyber risk insurance before it's too late.
But never mind the digression. Below are a few tips for protecting data in transit and at rest.
Ask yourself, where is your data stored? Is everything saved to a password-protected and encrypted cloud? Do you have on-premise data storage?
It's entirely possible that you have data saved all over the place. The trouble is that data is harder to preserve when you don't know where it is. If this describes your business, you may want to hire a cybersecurity agency to discover your wayward data. These experts will likely prescribe security measures to better store sensitive information.
For example, they may tell you to hash and salt customer information (such as social security numbers). This way, even if your data stores are hacked, your customers' data can't be read.
Similarly, they might recommend saving all information to an encrypted cloud. Once saved, each segment of your business will be given access on a need-to-know basis. For instance, your PR team won't need access to accounting information. The more entry points you have to your data, the easier it is to hack. This technique is known as silo-ing.
But what about data in transit? How can you safeguard sensitive information being sent in or out of your organization?
Well, firewalls are a great place to start. This basic defense measure obscures data transfers happening inside of your network to the outside world. But this has its limitations. If you employ a remote team or trade information with partners, your firewalls won't do you much good.
This is why many businesses are adopting virtual private networks (VPNs). A VPN works just like a firewall, except that it works for folks outside of your office. This is especially useful for communicating over public Wi-Fi; which is unfortunately and notoriously insecure.
You should also take a moment to educate your staff about proper data transfer protocols. Advise them to avoid sending sensitive information over email. There are simply too many cyberattacks meant to crack email servers and target users. Instead, tell your employees to save data to your encrypted cloud so that other workers can access it. This is much safer and much easier than you might imagine.
Still, there is no cure-all for data breaches. That's why it behooves companies to invest in cyber risk insurance. Don't have a policy? Visit CyberPolicy for your free quote today!