A data breach can be devastating for any company, as the event can tarnish reputations and expose sensitive information to malicious individuals. Smaller organizations, however, feel the effects even more so, as the fines, loss of customers and other consequences associated with breaches can close a firm for good. This makes securing confidential information that much more important for small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs).
SMBs can improve data protection by making records recoverable in the event of a breach or disaster. By using backup services, decision-makers can keep sensitive records out of the reach of malicious outsiders, according to a report by CRN.
Managers need to take an effective approach to recovery, however, as using traditional solutions like tape backup can lead to data security issues.
A new study by Mozy found that roughly one-third of SMB decision-makers allow employees to choose their own backup tools, often making them more vulnerable to breaches. For example, more than half of survey respondents said they use external hard drives to back up information, even though these devices are often stolen, lost or destroyed.
"The reality is that businesses often ignore backup options until after they have suffered the consequences of data loss," Mozy general manager Russ Stockdale said.
By migrating data to cloud computing environments and using the technology as an online backup solution, smaller firms can constantly update and save information, have it accessible from anywhere in the world and not pay too much out of pocket. Decision-makers need to ensure that these online resources use strong encryption and emphasize data privacy and protection, Stockdale said.
Additionally, as BYOD (bring your own device) policies become more common among SMBs, manager must emphasize securing portable gadgets, CRN noted. As more endpoints enter the organization, data security becomes a necessity to keeping information safeguarded against breaches. Unfortunately, many employees don't take protecting records on their mobile devices too seriously.
A recent report by the Ponemon Institute found that more than half of companies participating in the survey experienced a breach within the past year because of workers inappropriately using laptops, tablets, USB devices and smartphones. Although 77 percent of respondents said portable electronics are important for businesses to reach their goals, nearly the same amount noted the gadgets only invite more risk.
As the threat landscape continues to evolve, it is important for smaller firms to choose the right vendor for data protection, CRN said. By doing so, companies can eliminate risk and, hopefully, avoid data breaches altogether.
Data Security News from SimplySecurity.com by Trend Micro