It’s becoming inescapable to use technology for routine tasks at work, and digital privacy must now be a top priority for companies of all sizes. Because if a data breach occurs, it could damage your entire organization.
The average data breach now costs companies $4.63 million, proving that the financial losses alone can be devastating. And independent businesses have even more at stake, with 60% of small companies shutting down for good within six months of a data breach.
But finances are not the only factor impacted by a leak. When cybercriminals obtain confidential information from an organization, such as credit card numbers or client and company data, terrible things can happen. For instance, a data breach at a large corporation could mean that competitors have access to proprietary research. Plus, when the public learns that a data breach has occurred within your company, consumers lose trust, and your company’s reputation can be irreparably damaged.
With cyberattacks on the rise year by year, companies must take every measure possible to avoid the implications of a data breach. If your company is ready to benefit from improved corporate digital privacy, you can get started using these seven tactics.
1. Enact a Cohesive Strategy
Whether your business is large or small, it is of the utmost importance that you implement a detailed IT security strategy. Digital privacy is not where you want to “wing it,” and if you’re operating with vague policies and procedures, it can put your entire organization in a precarious situation.
An effective IT strategy should detail how to protect company and client information, along with an action plan that details what to do if something goes wrong. When an incident-response strategy is in place, your organization can remain calm and collected if a data breach occurs, enabling your team to respond quickly. As a best practice, review and update your IT security strategy every year or two to keep up with new advances in technology and cyber threats.
2. Protect Against Malware
To comprehensively protect against data threats, you must first secure all of your company’s electronic devices. After all, any electronics that can access your business network can also become a gateway for hackers or malicious software.
To help defend your company’s electronic devices, take the following actions:
- PC protection: Modern security software will protect your network without hindering the efficiency of your devices. Implement software that will protect against suspect websites, bots, identity theft, and cybercriminals.
- Apply a firewall: Although a firewall alone is insufficient to protect against all forms of malware, it adds an extra layer of security when it is used in combination with other forms of protection.
- Keep emails free of spam: Many cyberattacks arise from one wrong click on an email. With antispam software, you can protect your organization from unsafe emails.
3. Protect Every Password
If cybercriminals gain access to even one of your passwords, it could have widespread ramifications for your company and provide unauthorized access to highly sensitive data. Complicated, hard-to-guess passwords decrease the likelihood of a data breach, ensuring that everyone who accesses relevant company information can do so safely. First and foremost, embed all passwords with numbers and non-standard characters. Also, make it a company-wide practice to regularly change passwords to increase your network’s protection.
4. Create a Plan for Personal Devices
As more people work from home or on hybrid work models, many companies allow employees to work from their personal devices. To stay on top of the risks that come with staff using their own devices, create a plan to protect them from legal repercussions and mobile system costs. These policies should cover data deletion, Internet monitoring, and location tracking. Companies should also ensure that employees who work remotely have access to the software necessary for protection against security breaches.
5. Use Automatic Software Updates
Cybercriminals can quickly scan your company’s network to discover which operating system is currently running and use this information to compromise any outdated software. That’s why it’s in your organization’s best interest to consistently update operating systems and device security settings to prevent cybercriminals from gaining access. Both for ease and for continuous protection, configure software on your electronic devices to update automatically.
6. Dispose of Data Electronics Properly
Many businesses make the critical mistake of overlooking a safe data disposal process. When the proper data disposal protocols are in place, it significantly reduces the likelihood of a security breach. However, it’s not sufficient to click “Delete” and throw devices in the nearest dumpster. So what does proper disposal really mean?
To protect your company and client data, you need to partner with certified electronics recyclers who will completely eradicate any sensitive information deep within each device. Data can lurk in unexpected places and on unexpected devices, but with professional recycling support, you can rest assured that you’re protected by verifiable data destruction.
As a bonus, electronics recyclers will also ensure that your devices are disposed of in an environmentally compliant way.
7. Use Cloud Technology
Is your company using cloud technology? If not, it’s probably time to start. Most companies lack the IT infrastructure and time necessary to account for every security risk. In these cases, it’s significantly more effective to work with a cloud service provider to keep track of security updates. A trustworthy cloud service provider will store data and implement the appropriate security measures from their end, leaving less responsibility in your hand.
Although this may not be the best option for large corporations, it’s the ideal choice for small to mid-sized companies that require a greater level of data protection.
Protect Your Company’s Digital Privacy with FAMCe
Overlooking simple digital privacy risks can turn into a nightmare for your organization’s security, public image, and bottom line. This includes choosing the wrong IT disposal method. Luckily, there are certified, reputable recyclers that will dispose of your company’s electronic devices the right way. So when it’s time to get rid of your old waste electronics, choose a partner you can rely on.
First America Metal Corp. (FAMCe) has over 30 years of experience helping businesses safely and responsibly recycle their outdated devices, even in regulated industries. Our high level of expertise and exceptional customer service has built our reputation as a market leader, and we are committed to exceeding each client’s needs and expectations.
Want to support your corporate digital privacy by recycling your old devices with confidence? Contact FAMCe today for e-waste disposal that’s verifiable and secure.