Security Solutions for IT and Data
IT and Data security solutions
IT systems security and data privacy are at the heart of the Data Protection regulations. Equally, they are as relevant today as they were before the start of the coronavirus pandemic.
All businesses have changed as a result of the global pandemic.
New working practices had to be implemented rapidly. This has increased the data protection risks for many organisations.
Increased cyber attacks
So, any staff who are not used to working from home may be unaware of security holes in the setup of their Home Office IT systems. Equally, they may not have considered which changes to data handling practises are needed while working remotely.
So, where does this leave organisations?
Businesses are now more vulnerable.
This is because there was little time to assess data security or privacy risks before instructing staff to work from home. It was clear that business survival was the first priority.
However, businesses must now ensure that Assessments of Remote Working Practises are taken to identify new IT and data security risks.
It is crucial that businesses reduce the potential for data breaches.
Protecting data remains as essential as ever. So, employees should have practical guidance on data privacy while working from home.
At Data Protection 4 Business, we strongly recommend that all organisations take a closer look at their remote working setup. We have assessments to help you do this efficiently and pragmatically.
Security of IT systems and data. Assessing your business
Here are a number of areas to consider when undertaking assessments. This is not an exhaustive list by any means!
Know your data – what you need to protect and why
Firstly, understand what data resides where and who can access.
Secondly, what type of data is being processed? Is it high-risk data like medical information or confidential information about your business?
Thirdly, if this is the first time that employees have worked from home, you need to understand whether employees are using their own devices.
Data loss prevention
Next, identify the high-risk data and systems security issues. Then, businesses need to think about how to prevent data loss from those systems.
Reducing attack risks is the first step in protecting high-risk data and preventing data breaches.
Data encryption in transit and at rest
This means ensuring the security of emails when sending them. It also means securing data that resides on the various systems that your organisation has.
This applies to cloud-based apps too. Be sure to check the data security standards in use by cloud service providers.
Firewalls & antivirus
Installing firewalls prevents external unauthorised access to your internal systems. Using antivirus software prevents (known) malware from taking control of your internal systems and data.
Bad actors use phishing techniques to trick individuals into opening emails which contain links to computer viruses.
It is important to install firewalls and antivirus software to help avoid data theft and ransom requests to get it back!
Intrusion detection and prevention systems
Small and medium-size businesses may think that this is only for big companies. We do not think so. There are affordable solutions on the market.
Using role-based access is an effective method of reducing unnecessary access to data and IT systems. For applications which support it, data managers can restrict access to parts of a system based on the data processing each role undertakes.
Conditional access is another layer of security where managers can apply control to devices accessing various applications and systems. Additional security such as multi-factor authentication could apply at the device level.
Backup and recovery of cloud solutions
It is not enough to assume that because data is held in the cloud it is backed up in a meaningful way. Make sure to do appropriate checks on your cloud providers and the backup strategies they use.
Security of IT systems and data: Let’s work on solutions
At Data Protection 4 Business we have developed and continue to develop, effective Employee Assessments for home working.
We recommend that employees complete their Remote Worker Assessment, sign it and send it to business managers.
Then, these business managers can assess any security lapses, data protection issues or health and safety violations.
In addition, we have checklists for employers to help guide you through the Data Security and Privacy areas that should be addressed.
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