Is Your Customer's Data Protected from Hackers?

Between 2013 and 2014, cyber crime cost Canadians a total of $3 billion, up from $1.4 billion a year prior. [1] According to Stats Canada, fraud alone accounted for 54% of all cyber crime. [2] 

Between 2013 and 2014, cyber crime cost Canadians a total of $3 billion, up from $1.4 billion a year prior. [1] According to Stats Canada, fraud alone accounted for 54% of all cyber crime. [2] 

A drastic increase in cyber crime is due largely to a lack of security, preventative measures, and adherence to regulations such as Canada's Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act or PIPEDA.

No organization wants to have to inform their customer of a security breach that has compromised their data. To avoid this uncomfortable conversation, follow these recommendations to ensure that both yours and your customer's private data is protected:

Corporate Firewall

Ensure that your private network is protected from the Internet with a corporate grade firewall device. These devices act as a security appliance and actively monitor incoming and outgoing traffic to ensure that only trusted communications are occurring between your systems and the Internet. 75% of attack victims are targets of opportunity rather than specifically chosen targets. [3] A corporate firewall can provide intrusion protection, web filtering, access restrictions, and antivirus

Antivirus

1/3 of computers used today are already infected, therefore it is absolutely essential that every system within your network is protected by an up to date antivirus product. [3] Regardless of if you're doing everything else right, a single unprotected system poses a significant threat to the entire network. Additionally, antivirus products aren't very useful if they are weeks or months out of date. Be sure your antivirus product is designed for a business environment.

Permissions

On any given day, we typically use a number of software applications to accomplish tasks. These applications may or may not require access to sensitive data in order to function properly. Individual access ought to be restricted to ensure that only necessary information is available to both the applications, and the users of these applications. Who knows what someone may stumble upon if unfettered access is available!

Data Backup

Lastly, sensitive data may not have been breached, however by not maintaining a backup of data there is a risk that should that data be lost, you'll need to reacquire it from your customers. Every year, 6% of all computers lose their data. [4] This may leave a bad taste in their mouth because they had trusted you with a wealth of information which has now disappeared. Be sure that doesn't happen by keeping both on and off-site backups of all corporate data.

 

[1] http://canadaam.ctvnews.ca/cybercrime-cost-canadians-3b-in-past-year-2013-norton-report-1.1479940
[2] http://www.statcan.gc.ca/pub/85-002-x/2014001/article/14093-eng.htm#a1
[3] https://business.f-secure.com/10-smart-money-facts-about-business-security/
[4] http://visicomsvc.com/blog/entry/data-backup-4-facts-you-need-to-conside