Wednesday, 17 February 2021 19:12

Improving Customer Data Protection

It has always been important for businesses to protect the confidential information of their customers. However, as technology further weaves its way into the way business is conducted, diligence in this area is crucial. One can never truly predict what new hacking techniques will emerge, but it’s a safe bet that cybercriminals will actively look for ways to steal sensitive information regarding both you, your business, and your customers. That is why it is your duty is to do everything you can to keep this from happening. dataprotection

At American Lumber, we make customer data protection one of our top priorities. We also make sure that data protection is ingrained as a part of our company culture to ensure our team members recognize this urgency as well.  

Wondering what you can do to be better protected? Here are a few tips to we found helpful to keep in mind when attempting to improve your data protection efforts: 

Destroy paper documents and electronic files. Even in the digital era, paper documents sometimes contain sensitive data and are susceptible to theft. All such paperwork should be shredded when no longer needed. As for email and online documentation, make sure everyone understands that simply moving them to the “trash bin” doesn’t eliminate the risk of exposure. 

Provide a tough privacy policy. Protecting customer data should be at the top of your priorities as an organization. Maintain a detailed privacy policy and make sure everyone, especially your customers, know about it.  

Keep updated on encryption techniques. Technology to protect business data is constantly evolving. While your company may not need the absolute latest security software, it is still vital to review and revise the anti-virus technology you do use, and do it often. Advanced encryption and two-factor authentication are just a few of the most powerful anti-cybercrime tools at your disposal.

Additionally, be clear with customers about the type of data you collect, and your commitment to protecting it. By being honest with customers, you will build trust and show them that value their data and are work hard to protect it.

Uphold a company culture of data protection. Employees should understand they are expected to protect customer data as if it were their very own. Consider holding frequent staff meetings with the focus on detailing the latest hacking and cyber-fraud efforts out there and what you are doing to protect sensitive data.

It is also imperative to make it a requirement for employees to use complex passwords in their own work and to never download or open suspicious-looking email attachments from people they don’t know. 

Collect only necessary data. Unnecessary data provides a large cache for cyber-hackers to target. It also makes some customers uncomfortable about why you need all this information, to begin with.

Generally speaking, proper log-in identification processes and the use of complex passwords addresses many customer protection concerns. Don’t be one of those businesses that require an abundance of customers’ personal information, collect only what you need.

Restrict data access. Speaking of employees, do you know how many workers have access to your sensitive business information? Complacency in this area can often be a weak spot. Data falling into the hands of employees who don’t need it for their jobs can often lead to trouble.

Depending on the circumstances, carefully select trusted employees who have access to this information. Once you decide who qualifies, maintain a thorough record of staff given this privilege. Minimize the risk of data theft by restricting who gets to access it in the first place.

As we have seen over the years, a few businesses fall prey to large-scale data breaches every year, and 2021 will be no different. Take steps now to avoid this disaster and use your data protection policies to continue to build a greater level of trust with your customers.

American Lumber
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Last modified on Wednesday, 17 February 2021 19:55

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