Data breaches have become a common issue across industries that use or collect personal information. The absence of a robust solution against data security threats continues to be the status quo, and company executives are raising the alarm.
Last year, the personal data of over 500 million users of Facebook was compromised. Hackers posted the users’ phone numbers, full names, and other biographical data in a hacking forum. This is alarming because personal data is a tool for committing fraudulent activities.
This article provides answers to the question: what is data security? It outlines the risks companies face with a weak or lack of data security. Read more to learn how to ensure your personal data remains protected from breaches.
What is data security?
In businesses, data security is the application of protective strategies to ensure that company data is accessible only to authorized persons (i.e., employees). It involves using data security technologies to protect company data against cyber attackers.
Data security technology types
Selecting one or a combination of technologies for protecting company data depends on several factors. These factors include industry, data type, data collection, the purpose of collecting data, data storage, and more. In addition to this is the logging issues, wherein the protection of data involves using strong security measures for the protection of personal data and all the relevant activities involved such as collecting, storing, processing, accessing, transmitting, sharing, and disposing of the data. In this case, getting help from experts such as Mezmo is highly recommended as they are known for their real-time actionability from your observability data services.
Physical Access Controls
This type involves protecting IT assets that store company data or allow networking. A company stores data in its database using servers to support network connections. Companies use keycards and biometric authentication to manage access controls of these assets. In addition to IT personnel, they also hire security staff to add another layer of protection.
When sending emails containing sensitive information, cyber attackers can intercept and alter it. To dodge this security threat, companies also use encryption to conceal data. The sender sends the receiver an encryption key that they can use to decrypt the data.
Some companies use data masking to conceal data. It protects data by using proxy characters to “mask” the actual data. The software reverses the proxy characters when the sender receives it making data accessible to authorized receivers.
Most employees are familiar with authentication tools. These tools will play an essential role in session management. These include passwords used for logging in and biometrics. Biometric authentication requires people to use personal identifiers to access data.
Why is data security important?
Data security protects company data from insider threats and human errors. These two remain to be the leading causes of data breaches. Companies can shield company data by focusing on the location and purpose of data.
These data security technologies can automate reporting and apply security patches automatically. These efforts ensure high data security and compliance with regulatory standards involving data.
The impact of data breaches on businesses
Cybercrime continues to evolve and become more sophisticated. Businesses need to step up and improve their data security to lower the risks of cyber attacks. Consequences range from disrupting operations to damaging the company’s reputation. Some attacks involve the loss of intellectual property and subsequent loss of revenue.
Data Security Risks and Threats
Cyber attackers target different security vulnerabilities in a company’s data security system. Such vulnerabilities raise the risk of unauthorized access to protected data.
Social engineering attacks such as phishing and others
Frequent phishing attacks led to people unwittingly divulging their personal information to cybercriminals. Phishing is a social engineering attack that deceives people into granting access. They create copies of a reliable source to make it look as close to the original as to outwit their victims.
Employees can pose a threat to compromise company data. They can fail to follow data security protocols and expose data to cyber attackers. Or employees violate security protocols on purpose.
Data breaches can sometimes happen when employees ignore data security protocols. Over the years, there have been several cases of employees who share valuable data by mistake. Some lose IT assets (work laptops) that landed in the wrong hands.
Hackers use ransomware to penetrate business computers and encrypt their data. Without an encryption key, companies can’t use the data. Hackers would demand money from their victims in exchange for the encryption key.
Cybersecurity Solution Types
Security experts developed security solutions that address one or more types of threats.
Most people know software security solutions such as firewalls, antivirus, and antimalware solutions. Software developers integrate these software programs into device updates.
Compared to on-premise data, cloud-based data has lower chances of security breaches. Cloud security protects data in the company’s cloud sans massive data assets.
Security for the Internet of Things (IoT)
IoT security protects devices and networks (that connect those devices) from online threats. IoT devices include Wi-Fi routers, security cameras, sensors, and printers.
Apart from data storage, cybercriminals can launch attacks on company networks. Companies use machine learning to protect these networks. This AI solution applies network protection by spotting unusual high traffic. It can notify users about their risks.
Go for a More Sophisticated Cybersecurity
The impact of data breaches is significant on businesses and the consumers they serve. Companies must take proactive steps to assess their data security level. There is a range of data security solutions for companies to choose from. There are great learning resources for employee training, too.
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