Data security is more important than ever in this increasingly digitized world. It may seem like an obvious statement but a surprising number of businesses fail to adequately address protection measures for company data. According to the 2016 Global State of Information Security Survey, 2015 saw a 38 percent increase in cyber security incidents compared to 2014. And while spending on data security budgets did increase 24 percent, there is still a need for even more vigilance when it comes to the matter of data protection.
The causes of data loss can be extensive, from natural disasters to man-made catastrophes; the state of a business’s data can be compromised by a variety of variables. Yet the survey found that most problems were attributed to employee errors.
“The state of a business’s data can be compromised by a variety of variables”
Whatever the cause, the need for increased security is clear. Of the survey’s respondents, many have begun incorporating various tactical measures, with 69 percent of participants investing in cloud-based security such as cloud backup systems.
Common data security mistakes
The conclusion is straightforward: Companies need to take meaningful steps toward increasing data security measures. For many people and businesses alike it is useful to examine what forms data security issues and mishaps commonly take and the corresponding solutions. You know the saying: History is the best teacher. Here are three of the most common data security mistakes made by businesses of all sizes.
1. Neglecting data governance: Data governance refers to the general management of all things data. These programs or strategies include the oversight of availability, security, integrity and usability of all company information. Without proper data governance policies in place, businesses are at high risk for security problems, explained IT Business Edge. Companies that fail to keep track of key data or protect that core information adequately make one of the most dangerous security mistakes. “All the technology in the world won’t help if organizations fail to enact policies to protect their data,” said Cyber Security Strategist J. Wolfgang Goerlich, according to the source. Companies need to seek out online backup solutions and sort out what data needs to be protected at what level. Additionally, businesses should map out procedural plans regarding data recovery in the case of disasters. All of these measures can help safeguard your company considerably.
2. Settling for the bare minimum: There are plenty of things a person can skimp on but security is not one of them. Co-Founder of Clout Dan Fugardi told The Digital Guardian that cutting fiscal corners when it comes to protecting data is the biggest mistake companies make. Many companies reach for the lowest-hanging fruit when it comes to data protection. While these systems can do the job, there are thousands of other options that are stronger and better equipped to deal with a variety of issues. The solution? Take data protection seriously by making an investment. This doesn’t mean companies need to spend millions of dollars on the highest level of security; rather, that there should be a process of evaluation for various security providers to determine what security system best fits your business’ needs.
“Projects related to security should not exist in silos.”
3. Failing to align security and business goals: Projects related to security should not exist in silos. These undertakings must align with overarching business goals and be seen as a crucial component to a company’s success. Often times security leaders within a business have a hard time securing funding because data protection is seen an operational expense, explained IT Business Edge. Leaders need to take the time to understand why security projects are important and worth high-level investments. This mistake often extends to training initiatives surrounding security measures. Data protection should be a function delegated specifically to the IT department. Employees at every level interact with company data on a daily basis. A key step to securing data is making sure your employees are well-versed in best practices and new security initiatives. The solution lies in looking at security as a business enabler. Invest, educate and review – security initiatives should be treated like any other key business function.