Today, January 28, is Data Privacy Day. Championed by the National Cyber Security Alliance, Data Privacy Day draws attention to how data is used, some of the risks involved, and why you should treat your valuable data and your privacy with respect.
In honor of this day, we’re equipping you with six actionable tips that will help you and your customers safeguard both your data and your privacy.
1. Limit Access Control
Be selective when granting employees access to a company’s folders and files. The more access someone has, the greater the risk of a data breach or exposure. To keep data more secure, consider limiting access to what’s only needed for employees to perform their work.
2. Use Secure Passwords and MFA
If you have clients that use easy-to-guess passwords or don’t have any rules in place regarding password complexity and expiration dates, you’re asking for trouble. Take the time to introduce your own rules and requirements for password management, or use a management tool that provides effective security while simplifying the process for your customers. Consider deploying multi-factor authentication (MFA) as an added layer of protection, which can be enabled via SMS, email or other means.
3. Set a Reasonable Backup Cadence and Check Quality
A great way to know that data is safe is by making copies of it. This can protect valuable information from accidental or malicious deletion and overwrites, hardware or software failures, and even cyber attacks. Ensure you have regular backups set up at the cadence that makes most sense for your clients’ needs. This could mean a couple of times a day, or even a few times a week. Remember, by taking longer period of times without backing up, you increase the chances of losing more of that data again in the event of an incident and having to start that work over. Also, it’s important to check the quality of the data that is stored. Should a client need to access their backups, you’ll have peace of mind knowing the quality is good enough for the data to be used.
4. Follow the Rule of Three
The rule of three is a very simple rule that can make a huge difference to your business. It goes like this: have three copies of the data, on two types of media, and ensure you have at least one storage offsite. This rule can help protect important information for yourself and your clients and access that information no matter the circumstances.
5. Keep Your Desk Clean
This one may sound obvious, but we see risks at desks and workstations all the time: passwords written on sticky notes attached to a monitor, a USB drive sitting out in the open, or users stepping away from their computer leaving sensitive information up on the screen or forgetting to lock it. As an MSP, part of your job should involve educating and training your customers on the importance of ‘securing’ their workstation and physical space, which can help prevent any data mishaps in the future.
6. Stay Vigilant and Informed
In a world looming with threats to your data and privacy, the importance of being vigilant can’t be understated. Make sure that your employees as well as your customers are educated and understand how to identify a potentially malicious email, unexpected configuration changes or other suspicious behavior. And it’s never a bad idea to update their individual account privacy settings and stay abreast on privacy policies and how their data is being used and managed.
We hope these tips will help you respect privacy, safeguard data and enable trust between your business and the customers you serve. To learn more about Data Privacy Day or become a champion, visit here. Or, if you’re looking for more tips on staying secure online and in the office, give our eBook a read.
By Lily Teplow
By Brian Downey
By Lily Teplow