It would be no exaggeration to say that information is one of the most valuable things in the world. While some pieces of information are much more valuable than others, all of it has at least some value. Whether this data is sold to advertisers (allowing them to send you targeted ads), business rivals, or hostile foreign governments, it has the potential to inflict great harm upon the source. Let’s talk about the importance of information security and why you should be concerned about such.
1. Data Breaches Are Expensive
Anytime your data is compromised, the price tag is likely to be large. First of all, a lot of data breaches will result in extensive network downtime as system admins try to correct the issue. This means lost business and lost revenue. According to a report from IBM, the average cost of a major data breach in 2022 is $4.35 million. Bear in mind that this is an average cost, of course. For small businesses, the losses will probably be much smaller. Still, you can easily see that a data breach is something you can’t afford.
2. Data Breaches Can Ruin Your Reputation
Although the financial damage resulting from a data breach can be very bad, the damage to a company’s reputation can be far worse. For instance, Uber had a large and well-publicized data breach, and their reputation has never fully recovered. When customers or other organizations give you their personal data, they are trusting that you will keep it safe. If you fail to do so, they have every right to be upset. If a company conceals such a breach (as Uber tried to do), it gets far worse.
3. Compliance Issues
As you might already know, we do have data privacy laws in the United States. Many countries have adopted such laws, and they require the protection of private data. Of course, there is a lot of variation in these laws, but most places have them. Failure to follow these laws can and usually will result in large fines. Unless you can show that you took every available precaution, a data breach can easily cause legal issues.
4. Why Information Security Is Important For Business Continuity
A lot of the world’s business has moved online. As such, business data is important for the day-to-day running of any company. If you should suffer some kind of data disaster (like a cyberattack or a massive system crash), information security becomes very important. The best way to deal with data loss is through the use of a recent backup. However, without good information security, there is a good chance your backup could be stolen, deleted, corrupted, or otherwise rendered useless. Without good backup data, business continuity in the face of a disaster will be much harder.
5. Accidental Deletion
On top of all these other risks, you also have the risk of accidental deletion. A lot of important information gets lost in this way, so don’t underestimate this issue. Of course, this situation becomes a lot more likely if you don’t practice proper information security procedures. By limiting access to sensitive information, you can greatly reduce the likelihood of accidental deletion. Most employees won’t require that level of privileged access for their daily work.
Some people say that accidental deletion is the leading cause of data loss. According to this report, 58% of surveyed companies listed it as their main reason for backing up crucial business data. This high number indicates that accidental deletion happens an awful lot. Since it doesn’t require a malicious outside actor, it probably is the most common cause of data loss.
General Tips For Information Security
All of these risk factors illustrate why information security is so important. In many cases, it can make or break a company. So, let’s talk about a few things that you can do to reduce those risks.
- 1. Limit access to information by classifying it within different levels
- 2. Maintain an efficient and up-to-date data backup system at all times
- 3. Extensively educate all high-level users regarding common cyber-threats like social engineering and ransomware
- 4. Use “air-gapping” methods to separate the most crucial data from your regular network
- 5. Understand that data backups are incredibly important and must be protected strongly
- 6. Always stay up to date with the latest security software and patches
- 7. Maintain a network monitoring plan so that stolen data can be intercepted on the way out
- 8. Become familiar with all data privacy/data protection laws in your area
- 9. Use penetration testing to seek out and close any gaps in your information security setup
- 10. Thoroughly vet any and all employees who will have access to sensitive information
Information security has always been important for businesses, governments, and other large organizations. However, as cybercrime continues to increase, these concerns have naturally become much larger. Without good information security, you are basically a sitting duck waiting for the first hunter to come along. At PCH Technologies, we understand the importance of data security and that is why we provide comprehensive data protection solutions that have stood the test of time. If you would like to know more, you can contact us at (856) 754-7500.
Our Florida Office
As of 2022, PCH Technologies has opened up a new location in Fort Lauderdale, FL in order to serve the South Florida Market. This expansion into the South Florida market aligns strategically with our plans to continue to grow a national presence as a managed service provider (MSP).