Businesses of all sizes are responsible for a great deal of client and employee information. However, many small businesses don’t appear to understand the risk posed by data breaches and are complacent about protecting confidential information.
The results of the 2012 Security Tracker, an independent survey conducted by Ipsos Reid on behalf of Shred-it, shows that nearly half of U.S. small businesses do not have an employee directly responsible for managing data security.
The reason for this may be that a surprising 51% of small businesses believe that lost or stolen data would not seriously impact their business. In fact, data breaches cause nearly 80 per cent of small businesses to file bankruptcy or suffer severe financial losses within two years of the breach, according to identity theft specialist John Sileo
It’s never too late to make security a priority. Safeguard your confidential information and your business by taking the following steps:
- Implement ongoing risk analysis processes and create a policy specifically designed to limit exposure to fraud and data breaches.
- Regularly train employees in proper document management and encourage their adoption of security best practices.
- Utilize special locked consoles to house sensitive materials that are waiting to be properly shredded.
- Implement a “shred-all” policy so that all unneeded documents are fully destroyed on a regular basis.
- Don’t overlook hard drives on computers or photocopiers; physical hard drive destruction is proven to be the only 100% secure way to destroy data from hard drives permanently.
- Hire a reliable vendor that is well-informed and keeps you compliant with pertinent legislation, training requirements etc.