Customer Data Protection: How To Secure Private Data within Your Company

As a business owner, you can’t afford to lose a customer’s private information. Customer data protection is one of the most important factors to consider.

The industry of cybercrime is booming. Cybercriminals generate an estimated $1.5 trillion in annual earnings, which is the same as Russia’s entire GDP. Data is the currency of cybercrime. Cybercriminals attack networks, steal data and information, and distribute it or retain it as a hostage in ransomware attacks.

In modern society, it’s crucial that your business is protecting your customers’ personal information from cyberattacks at all costs. If you don’t want the next news headline to be about how much data was stolen from your company’s database, use the tips below and start protecting your business from future potential attacks.

Why Protecting Customer Data is Important

Your company relies on the security of your customers’ personal details. In the event of a data breach, your firm will lose customers, face penalties, and even face prosecution unless you take adequate measures to safeguard your users’ data.

Equifax serves as a sobering example. This was one of the most well-publicized data breaches of the new century. The net worth of the credit monitoring firm dropped by $4 billion in a single night. In addition, the Federal Trade Commission recently slapped them with a $700 million fee. Even to this day, there is still a lot of bad press surrounding Equifax because of that one data hack.

Legal statutes, such as the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA), will also force you to compel and secure customer details. European residents’ personal information must be protected in accordance with the GDPR. Fines can be imposed if you don’t.

At least 25 states possess privacy regulations that affect both privately held and publicly owned businesses in addition to the GDPR and the CCPA.

Even if your company doesn’t physically operate in states or countries with data protection regulations, you could still be susceptible to fines if your data comes from residents of such jurisdictions.

How to Ensure Customer Data is Protected

All businesses should understand the following steps to ensure they are protecting customers’ data in light of recent laws such as GDPR, CCPA, and others.

Hire cybersecurity experts to protect data

Edith Cowan University describes a cybersecurity specialist as “someone who is responsible for providing security during the building of software systems, networks and data centers.”

Cybersecurity professionals’ roles are to search out security threats, manage and monitor attacks and build up cyber defenses to fend off future attacks. These experts can’t be understated. Their salary may accrue more cost to your business, but the reduction in potential risk and threats drops dramatically.

Do not collect anything but the most essential information

Security measures can be improved by lowering the outer worth of your information, which makes it less attractive to attackers. For a hacker, it may not be worth their while if they can only get your email list from you.

Hackers search for juicy, vulnerable data such as names, addresses, contact details, social security numbers, and bank account information. When this data is paired with other information such as household expenditures, hackers can sell this off to the highest bidder and the customer is now subject to identity threat.

Restrict the use of data

Some of the data you collect may not be necessary for everybody in the company to see. As a result of restricting access to your organization’s data, there will be fewer gatekeepers and places of weakness for the attack. In the world of data, every point of entry is a potential weak spot for the company’s security.

Let’s think about it for a second. If you have 25 user accounts that have access to important customer data, then that means you have 25 security vulnerabilities. If just one single account has a weak password out of all 25 of your employees, your whole network is vulnerable.

Make use of password management tools

It’s possible to improve your company’s data security and lower the possibility of a cyberattack by mandating the use of a password management tool by all staff members.

This tool keeps all difficult passwords of all applications and tools.  People frequently avoid using strong passwords since they are hard to memorize. By encoding and collecting every password using a management tool, it becomes much easier. With the password manager in place, it’ll be easy for somebody to retrieve the login details whenever they need them.

Most password management tools are encrypted using a variety of methods. When a password is encrypted, someone who doesn’t have the encryption key can’t parse it. To put it another way, the passwords will be rendered useless if a hacker gets their hands on your password management tool.

To get the most out of password management tools, you should only use one login for a single application. Team members generate a password that is memorable and distribute it to anyone who requires it. Using shared passwords in this manner without requiring additional verification is obviously a security risk.

Learning cyber security best practices is the most important thing you can do for customer data protection and customers’ precious data.

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