Small businesses are often the target of cyber-attacks, yet many owners don’t take the necessary precautions to protect their data. In this article, we’ll outline some of the most common data security threats facing small businesses and offer tips on how you can safeguard your company’s information. Cybercrime is a billion-dollar industry, so it’s important to take steps to protect your business from becoming a victim. Let’s start by outlining some of the most common threats:

Why Is Data Security Important For Businesses?

Data security is critical for businesses because, ultimately, companies are built on information. Losing company data could put a company’s future in jeopardy.

Data compromises can cause huge regulatory fines, lost data that could lead to financial loss, decrease sales due to data breaches, damage brands and it can take years to recover. There are federal data security standards that must be followed by many businesses in the healthcare sector as well as corporations with more than 10 employees. It is becoming more common now with data security measures including encryption software being used by small businesses as well.

What Are Some Of The Options Available For Data Security?

Data security is one of the most important issues that companies are focusing on. This includes the data that they have themselves as well as data that they store externally. A company must consider all of its data to be important because it helps them get more insight into their customer base, business development opportunities, industry trends, etc.

Once you have found your data, there are several different options available when it comes to data security which depends on your specific business needs. Some standard data protection methods include user management, permissions, and encryption of data at rest or during transit. A form of layer data security can be used which includes data at rest, data in transit, and data in use.

Data at rest is data stored on a computer’s hard drive, data stored on a server, or data stored in an offline storage device such as a USB data stick. When the data remains unchanged from the moment it is stored to the time it is accessed, that data can be considered data at rest.

Data in transit, data moving through a data channel, is data that has left its source and still resides somewhere other than on the destination system or device. Data in use is data that is still on a device as opposed to data that has been deleted or replaced by other data. 

When data is at rest, it does not have to be encrypted because data at rest can only be accessed by authorized individuals with proper authorization credentials. When data is in motion, data security becomes a critical component of data privacy and information assurance.

Data in use, such as data on devices and unstructured data, can include personally identifiable information (PII), trade secrets, confidential business information, intellectual property, source code, social security numbers, and more.

All of which are attackers’ favorite targets. Once they’re able to acquire this data then they have access to the company’s most vital assets. The bad news here is that companies may not know how much data there really is until an attack occurs.

What Does Data Leakage Refer To?

Data leakage refers to the unauthorized disclosure of a company’s data assets. Whether intentional or unintentional, data leaks can lead to legal and financial implications for your business if they occur. This happens when sensitive data held by your organization falls into an unpermitted third party’s hands through various means including cyberattacks.

What Are The Ways To Prevent Data Security Breaches?

When data security breaches happen, there are some common signs that they may have. These signs include data loss, system failure, and data not being accessible anymore. The company may also experience legal issues, financial losses, and data protection failures. Here’s the detailed guide on how to prevent data security breaches:

1. Prepare For Attacks On Your Data Security

The data security industry is booming, with data breaches occurring everywhere. It’s clear that data security is incredibly important to businesses of all shapes and sizes, but it can be hard to know where to start. 

For the most part, it comes down to educating yourself on data security measures that can protect your data against today’s data-driven cyber attacks. Fortunately, data security experts are more than willing to share their knowledge about data security for businesses.

2. Ensure My Company Data Stays Secure

Data security starts with being proactive about learning how hackers operate so you know what avenues to avoid when developing a digital strategy. Beyond this, many organizations will have tools already in place — think firewalls or antivirus software — but these usually don’t offer data security. 

The data itself needs to be consistently monitored and tracked, and even then, businesses can still be vulnerable if employees aren’t trained or motivated correctly.

3. Implement Data Encryption

Some of the ways to prevent data security breaches can be done by implementing data encryption/decryption practices on both digital data and physical storage devices like computers, laptops, or servers. Another way would be to implement proper data disposal procedures for all kinds of business data records.

4. Make A Safe Data Recovery Strategy

As data protection becomes ever more critical, data security for businesses must be addressed. This data recovery plan can help you keep your data safe by establishing a set of rules to follow when you are creating, accessing, storing, or sharing data.

5. Delete Any Data That Is No Longer Needed

There are many reasons data needs to be securely deleted. From a data security business perspective, data deletion is important because data should not fall into the wrong hands. If data remains on a hard drive after you have turned off your computer or left for another job, there could be information available that threatens your company’s trade secrets or clients’ personal data. 

Data must also be properly destroyed when it has reached its end of life. Computers and devices with sensitive data should be wiped clean before they are sold, donated, or discarded.

It is also important to know how long to retain data. You might need records from five years ago for tax purposes but not wish to keep them forever since that would unnecessarily take up disk space within your office network.

6. Reduce Data Security Risks

There are many ways to reduce data security risks. You can use data loss prevention (DLP) technology to monitor the data usage of your employees and identify inappropriate data transfer over corporate networks or via email. Additionally, appropriate encryption solutions help make data unreadable if it is compromised by an unauthorized individual.

A data backup system ensures that your organization’s data will remain available in the event of a disaster or server failure, while access management products provide safeguards that restrict who has access to what data on servers and shared network drives within your business.

Data security is an extremely important issue that every company should be aware of because it could lead to data leakage and a number of other issues. To combat this problem, there are several options available for your business such as software programs or monitoring employees’ activities on the job. The best way to prevent any breaches in data security is by creating a safe data recovery strategy with regular backups and deleting all irrelevant information appropriately. Contact us today if you would like more advice about how we can help make sure your business has no worries when it comes to protecting its valuable customer data. You won’t regret contacting us!

Are You Looking For A Data Security Expert You Can Trust for Your Business?

Managed Technology Solutions, also known as ManagedTEK – IT Security Services & Monitoring, is a managed service provider that provides IT support and security solutions for businesses throughout the greater San Francisco Bay Area. ManagedTEK, was founded on an urgency to empower and protect our community from the digital war on personal security and privacy. We focus and specialize in protecting businesses from falling victim to increasingly complex cyber threats. We use cutting-edge technology along with proven cybersecurity practices to provide support and protection for small businesses. Contact us today for your free consultation!