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Many companies are now completely reliant on the data stored on their network servers, PCs, laptops, mobile devices - or in the cloud. Some of this data is likely to contain either personal information and/or confidential company information.
Here we look at some of the issues to consider when reviewing the security of your computer systems, and how to minimise the risks of data loss. We have a related factsheet which covers some additional considerations for those with data in the cloud, or use some form of outsourcing.
There have been many high profile incidents of data loss - where large volumes of personal information have found their way into the public domain. Examples of this sort of information have included health records, financial records and employee details.
A commercial organisation also faces the additional risk of data being lost to a competitor.
Obviously, the larger data losses from government departments and corporations have hit the headlines. However, any company, no matter how large or small can suffer data loss unless sensible precautions are taken.
In the past year alone, according to recent research commissioned by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) some 45% of small/micro businesses have experienced some sort of security breach or cyber attack in the 12 months. The small/micro business survey results can be found here.
The full report encompassing all company sizes can be found here.
Over all sizes of business, the most common types of of breaches were - fraudulent emails (72% of all breaches), viruses and malware (33%), organisational impersonators (27%) and ransomware (17%).
Consider the potentially sensitive and confidential data which is stored by your business -
So the key question is - If all or some of this data is lost who could be harmed and in what way?
When that is known, then steps to mitigate the risks of data loss must be taken. Here are some steps which can be undertaken to reduce the risk of data loss -
As well as risk reduction, it is also good practice to have procedures in place in the event a security breach occurs.
This should concentrate on four main areas -
National Cyber Security Centre (UK) - www.ncsc.gov.uk/guidance.
The cyber threat to UK business - www.ncsc.gov.uk/cyberthreat.
Please contact us at Hart Shaw if you require help in data security and data loss risk reduction:
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