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How to Reduce Data Breaches Through Human Error

Published on 31 October 2014

With hackers and cloud breaches making headlines recently, it has become all important to make sure that you're doing everything you can to keep your data secure. This applies to businesses too. Just because you're made up of more than one person does not make you less vulnerable. In fact, it makes you more so.

IBM's Cost of Data Breach Study from the Ponemon Institute revealed that employee negligence was identified as the root cause of 40% of data breaches in the UK. The main issues were mishandling of information, violations of industry and government regulations, inadvertent data dumps, stolen laptops and wrongful access.

Education and Training

The best way that you can reduce data breaches is through the education and training of your employees. Both general awareness security training and data loss prevention technology can help educate your employees so they know what they are doing with data.

Schedule on-going training to refresh and update your employees' knowledge on protecting confidential information.

Company Commitment

Implement a strong security posture and incident response plans, and appoint an information security officer and you could reduce the cost of a data breach by 20 percent. If possible, create a team with members from different areas of your organisation, including IT, human resources, compliance and legal. Implement on-going risk analysis, and create a policy designed to limit exposure to data breaches. Review company policies regularly to make sure they're up to date with legislation.

Top Tips:

- Don't forget hard copies. Destroying hard copies is the only way to 100% guarantee data destruction.

- Deploy encryption and strong authentication solutions.

- Keep an inventory of all information that needs to be protected.

- When information is no longer needed, have both paper and electronic documents securely destroyed.

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