Insights 28th January 2021

Data Protection Day- 4 ways of protecting your data and maintaining compliance in a remote work environment

Data Protection day is an opportunity to reflect on the rights that protect people’s data worldwide. It is also a day to recognise how industry thought leaders can play a pivotal role in orchestrating those rights.

With that being said, the awareness behind data protection day should be permeated to society every day. Yes, Data Protection Day serves a timely reminder of individual privacy; however, distributing awareness surrounding how data protection should be instilled in every organisation’s strategy and day to day processes and procedures is essential.

The Covid-19 pandemic has upended economies, irrevocably changed consumer behaviour, and forced businesses to operate remotely. While it has pressed pause on our lives in many ways, in other ways, the pandemic has fast-tracked the digitalisation of our economy.

According to Shred-It’s 2018 State of the Industry Report, 86% of business executives believe remote workers increase a company’s chances for a data security breach.

With organisations currently running on a ‘work from home’ model, it’s imperative to ensure leaders are adhering to these standards on how to manage information security. Here are some focus areas that leaders, and more broadly businesses, should follow to ensure remote workers are safeguarding customer and personal data.

Use Encryption Software

Organisations should be aware and mindful that any programs used for communication should utilise end-to-end encryption.

Encryption software can protect company data by barring access from any unauthorised users of those devices. Additionally, using encryption software is another way remote workforces can defend themselves against cyber-criminals and exposition confidential data. If an employee’s device is stolen or lost, the information on that device can find its way into the wrong hands and expose the company to data breaches and vulnerabilities.

With an ever-increasing amount of private information being transmitted online, encryption is quickly establishing itself as an absolute necessity for more secure and private online communications.

Keep Passwords Strong and Varied

According to Imation Corp survey, three in 10 remote workers admitted they did not protect their data with passwords. Hence, implementing and empowering strong password policies is a critical factor in ensuring your organisation’s data security safety. Strong, unique passwords should control any access to work-related documents, emails, or network.

Utilise Two-step authentication

When adding more remote access solutions to ensure protection, leaders should also consider utilising two authentications. Passwords can often be compromised or stolen, but with 2FA, someone’s chances of having the additional security question’s answer or a PIN are unlikely.

Don’t Forget Firewalls, Antivirus Software and Anti-Malware.

Anti-virus software, anti-malware and firewalls have never been more prominent to businesses as they are now.

Ensure that you continue to update your security solutions across all devices. This will help protect devices against malware, phishing attacks, and other threats and help identify malicious websites while browsing.

Data protection law should not be seen as a barrier to increased and different types of remote working. However, as a necessary practice to ensure your organisation and employees are still kept as safe as possible in various working environments.

Nonetheless, Data Protection Day gives a chance for a diverse number of organisations to come together to acknowledge the trust customers put in organisations to protect their data and stresses how essential safeguarding data will be for remote workers in 2021 and beyond.

Like that? Read these...