data security

What exactly is Data security?

Basically, data security is the concept of keeping our personal data protected against fraud and unauthorized access. Our main focus behind securing data whether it’s a on a business or a single person level will always be to ensure privacy while safeguarding corporate and personal data.

Think of data as rows and columns of raw form information that’s stored in server data bases, personal computers, and networks servers. This can be a range of personal information like your social security number and bank statements stored on an external hard drive to top secret information about the government sitting behind a heavily secured mainframe. In other words anything that us humans find interesting and can be read.

Many people are unaware of how important this can be. There are millions of attempts every year to try and gain unwarranted access to someone’s privacy. Do you remember back in 2013 when Target was hacked and millions of consumer’s information such as credit card and other personal information were released over the internet? Now you wouldn’t think a big company such as Target to be on the receiving end of an attack, but let it be known that anyone and anything are not safe. Not only has Target been hacked recently but Sony, Ashley Madison, Home Depot, and a slew of other companies small and big.

The past decade data security has risen significantly but that’s no surprise. On average we spend at least 4 hours just browsing on the internet. That’s not including the time we spend on social media. With us spending so much time spent on the internet more and more of our personal lives are exposed to the dark and uncaring strangers that surface the web suspiciously. We must put together an active security plan that everyone full understands to combat the upcoming attacks in the near future.

Why data security is of importance

It can be devastating to lose such important information, but you need to know that losing your personal files to a lightning strike is much less severe than some hacker obtaining it. But to put things into perspective we don’t want to lose anything no matter what the situation is. It can be really difficult let alone frustrating to try and replace all of these critical documents. So entailing some great security measures to help deter these horrific situations is paramount.

Identifying impending risks that we all have to face at one point in time and applying thorough data security research will help us to alleviate these imposing threats.

  1. Human errors happen all the time after all we are humans and we make mistakes even if they’re important ones. A simple slip up of incorrectly inputting data can be catastrophic.
  1. Corporate espionage and other devious activity.
  1. Blackouts, Conflagrations, thievery, and physically damaging something due to revenge or former disgruntled employees.

Some important things that have to be considered at the next security conference:

Developing strategies to help identify and elude areas that are at risk of vulnerability, and laying out an effective Data Security Policy.

  1. Training Policies: Train your staff to better understand the importance of data security and apply the correct procedures. First thing I want to stress out about is social attacks. If someone can come in and gain access to your data just by impersonating an employee then why would they go through the fuss with trying to gain access via a computer? You could have the most expensive and robust equipment in your business, but if your employees aren’t prepared and have difficulty understanding his or her role then it’s useless.
  • Protect your data simply by teaching and preparing your employees the fundamentals of network and data security.
  • Make sure you and your employees are on the same page by holding daily or weekly conferences. Talk about what’s going on around the security side of the web and learn about what new security hacks are spreading.
  1. Password Policy Procedures: The uses of very strong passwords are not to be underestimated. Setting up your own Password Policy and giving everyone including temporary employees a unique password is easier than ever now. Once the temporary workers are done make sure to erase the current password even if they are coming back for future work.
  • The complexity of your passwords should not be over looked. No more “ABC123” or “SALLY345”, unique passwords with upper and lower cases, special characters such as *, and long characters.
  • Mix them up and if the password is too difficult to remember write it down on something and keep it out sight (simply put somewhere safe where only you would look.) Do not share passwords with any employee.
  1. Obtaining the right equipment: Purchasing yourself the right security appliances doesn’t have to be expensive nor a daunting task. Picking up the phone and calling a certified IT security consultant is ever so easy now a day. But what if I told you that you can all of this yourself? Never fear take these tips into consideration.
  • Can you deploy these devices fast and quickly without any hiccups? Just because the specifications have a bunch of neat features listed doesn’t mean you need to buy it. Some times less is more. But if you insist on getting it make sure the consultant is certified and knows what they’re talking about.
  • How much is it going to cost you to buy the equipment, support it, and manage it all? Are you going to do this buy yourself or are you going to have a dedicated employee maintain it?
  • One thing that needs to be emphasized is the importance of future proof. Since we are developing technologies at a rapid pace purchasing devices that have the abilities to withstand future enhancements is critical.
  1. Giving individual users a specific role: Putting time restrictions and limiting certain users to certain computers is severely under looked. Don’t give just anyone access to any computers. You need to have a pre-defined plan on who has access to what. Learn more about roles and here.
  1. Backing up your files: We need to keep a copy of our files in a secure location whether it’s storing them on a separate hard drive or storing them into the cloud. Having a hard drive lying around can be much more convenient, but what if a natural disaster was to occur? You could have multiple backups of your files stored on separate hard drives, but if a fire was to occur then those hard drives aren’t going to help. Well lucky for us the cloud is here and ever so prominent!

Basically the Cloud is a secure remote center that stores data onto their networks. You can also run an entire network in the cloud, but that’s beside the point. What I am trying to convey to you is that the cloud lifts the burden off of your shoulders. You don’t have to worry about natural disasters or cyber crimes happening because these businesses are as robust as they come.

There are plenty of services out there that help in the aid of backing up your files and storing them into a cloud service. The top 3 that seem to be on everybody’s list are

  • Dropbox – has been in the game since 2007 and is an excellent choice to go with!
  • Google drive – was founded in 2012 but they are rising quickly due to their great services!
  • OneDrive – Launched their services in 2007 as well dropbox and is said to be their main competitors.

Since we’re not going to go too deep into the pros and cons of these services in this article. It’s all going to boil down to researching and choosing which one YOU think your business is going to benefit from.

Ok so now that we have listed out some tips for you. Go out and implement these in your network or maybe you have some upcoming projects you can use these tips on. It’s up to you how secure you want your data to be. It doesn’t matter if you own a small mom and pop store, or if you’re an it consultant for a fortune 500 company. Securing our Data is important to all of us and we need to be better prepared.

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