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The Dangers of Internal Data Breaches

A blog we wrote a couple of weeks ago detailed the dangers that go along with employees bringing their work home. As it turns out, though, security risks don’t just happen when data is taken home — they can happen right inside the workplace.

John Kendall, director of the National Security Program at Unisys APAC, noted in a recent interview with Biztech2 that many of the security threats plaguing businesses these days are internal, not external. Especially given the growing number of personal devices being used in the workplace, data security is difficult to manage and often extremely complicated to deal with.

Looking at some statistics makes a few things clear:

  • Customers value data security: in the interview just mentioned, Kendall noted a study in Australia—when asked what they would do if their data was breached by an organization, 85% of customers said they would take their business elsewhere, and 64% said they would publicly expose the issue, both very bad things for your company image and your long-term success.
  • Lax security leads to legal action: in that same study, 47% of customers said they would take legal action. Even if that statistic is ignored, it should be clear enough why security is important from a legal standpoint, as a multitude of laws like HIPAA and FACTA closely detail the repercussions for lax security.
  • No business is safe: in a study of 250 IT professionals, 73.3% said “would not bet against their company suffering a data breach in the next six months” — a sobering statistic coming from inside companies dealing with personal data. These IT professionals’ outlook should be warning enough that no business is safe.

What You Can Do To Help

Luckily, even in dealing with the complicated issues surrounding data security as it relates to employees’ personal devices, there are a number of things your business can do to help:

  • Don’t just restrict access to data, secure it: encrypting data, rather than just putting passwords on computers and phones, ensures that even if documents themselves get into the wrong hands, they’ll still be protected.
  • Conduct a data security risk assessment: assessing any data security risks prior to a data breach is critical and will point out any weaknesses in your security plan, allowing you to fix weaknesses before they’re exploited.

One of Datashield’s often-overlooked services is our compliance consulting: given the complexity of data privacy laws, it can be difficult to make sure your business is keeping up, but we are here to help. Datashield can make sure that your business’ security is up to spec before a data breach happens to you — a critical step in data security.

For more information on how we can help, contact us today.

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