As the recent spate of high-profile data breaches has shown, even well-heeled global companies are vulnerable to significant losses of sensitive information. One of the biggest areas for concern and one that most companies need to address more stringently is the theft of data from employees. A great deal of work has been done in assessing and mitigating the risk of breaches of sensitive information from outsiders but as recent events have demonstrated employees cleared to access critical data are making internal decisions that contribute to serious compliance vulnerabilities.
Also having an impact on internal data breaches are the accidental variety where increased multitasking on mobile devices unintentionally results in files being saved in the wrong place or links that are copied and moved to unsecure locations. Just one small instance can result in a compliance violation and continued occurrences can add up to some hefty fines not to mention the security and privacy implications.
Employees sharing credentials, server and user names and passwords when using internal networks can also compromise security. If hackers gain minimal access they are in position to scan the network to obtain login information for a number of systems and gain access to even more critical data.
In order for companies to remain steadfast in protecting information they must outline policies and procedures and provide training on how compliance risks are dealt with. When risks do occur, the best procedure is to allow the end user to decide on a fix and not leave it to the compliance officer’s manual review.
Rules have been put into place to provide further requirements for internet access in some industries. These changes will impact both private and public institutions, but given the number of breaches that continue to occur, its likely more legislation governing the protection of private information will be adopted in the future.
For now, companies will need to stay apprised of changes even though it may prove difficult and somewhat confusing with all the different layers and the variety of compliance requirements necessary in today’s environment. Global companies will have a more difficult time. Even so, data security will remain an integral component for all companies and compliance with regulations will need to be followed to help mitigate the increasing levels of data breaches worldwide.
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