The coronavirus and Covid-19 pandemic has implemented many changes in many of our lives. Alongside the sheer concern for the health and wellbeing of ourselves and loved ones, many of us are finding that our jobs and daily routines are completely changing too. In a bid to slow the spread of the virus, governments around the world have implemented all sorts of measures to encourage people to stay home rather than spending time in public around others. These include governments encouraging employers to let staff who can work from home to stay out of offices and other commercial spaces and to work from home instead. This has come hand in hand with many challenges, but a key one has been data protection. With cybercrime on the rise (as cybercriminals acknowledge vulnerabilities in companies who are only just switching to remote work), it’s absolutely essential that we take this subject seriously. All businesses hold a lot of data and it needs to be protected as best possible at all times. Here’s some more information on the subject.
What Actually Is Data?
Before we delve into this topic, it’s first important that we have a complete understanding of what data actually is. While the term “data” is used a lot, and many of us assume we know what it means, the vast majority of us only have a vague idea and would struggle to explain to someone else what data is. So, if we put it simply, data is just another way of saying “information”. Data can be any fact, word, number, figure, observation, or measurement that your business takes. As you can imagine, your business takes in a whole lot of data on a day to day basis. Whether that’s names, addresses, email addresses, phone numbers, payment information or anything else, this is information that needs to be protected.
Why Do We Need to Protect Data?
Now, you may be wondering why it’s so important that we protect data. At the end of the day, if your company or business leaks data, you compromise the individuals’ safety. You probably hold personal information on your customers, employees, partners and more. If this is leaked, cybercriminals and others can use it to commit crimes such as identity theft, fraud or financial theft. This is why data protection laws are in place!
Disposing of Data
Some data only needs to be held temporarily and should be disposed of as soon as possible. If the data is printed and tangible, you need to use document destruction services. If it is digital, it needs to be thoroughly deleted.
Data that needs to be held onto needs to be stored properly and in a way that complies with data protection laws. Make sure to familiarise yourself with these laws and to follow them to the word. You can bring in professionals to help with this too if you feel lost.
Data really is important and it’s essential that you deal with it safely, store it responsibly and dispose of it thoroughly when it is no longer used. Hopefully, some of the above advice can help you to achieve this!