7 Ideas to Protect User Data

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User Data
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Cybersecurity remains one of the growing concerns among businesses and the public as the world’s economy continues to grow into a more digitally centered infrastructure. From financial institutions to public utilities, a laptop repair service to a law firm, we have all heard the reports on national news about data breaches, but what is a good data protection strategy? Take a holistic approach as most cybersecurity experts suggest. Here are some helpful tips, suggestions and ideas to protect user data. Learn to develop a process of procedures and protocols to nurture your data protection best practices, otherwise known as data-protection management. Continue reading to learn more. 

What is Data Protection?

Data protection is a phrase that we use to describe the way information is safeguarded or kept private from intrusion or unwanted obstruction. Many are afraid of hackers or hacking. These terms can actually be positive or negative. Black hat hackers are defined as those with malicious intent trying to infiltrate, disrupt or manipulate networks to steal, spread misinformation or perform other nefarious activity. This includes phishing scams and social engineering through email, text, social media and other means. White hackers are those that perform similar activities but openly to support stronger security and utility for end users. 

Data-protection Best Practices

Data-protection best practices can best be defined as those practices that keep a network secure and resilient against threats from both within and outside the network itself. This includes the organizational level at companies and groups due to the fact that insiders often assist outside groups to infiltrate the network, so strong diligence in protocol for permissions and entry are important. Computer privacy and data protection tools are rudimentary but without the procedures and protocols, they aren’t enough. Infrastructure and backup is also important to prevent loss, which is discussed next. 

Data Loss Prevention (DLP)

Data loss prevention is an important element of data-protection management as well. Consider a law firm that stores important customer data on a server and some menial error, either human or computer glitch, renders the data useless. Or sensitive data will leak into the network. Even strong encryption can’t protect against that. This is why back ups are critical. The suggestion here is to regularly backup data, set restore points, analyze data for inconsistencies or corrupt data and other similar tasks regularly. It has become clear that complexity brings its own challenges to networks so hire and retain experts that will keep security priority and keep updated regularly. 

Storage with Built-in Data Protection

Protect User Data
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Of course, storage with built-in data protection helps solve a lot of key problems associated with some of the ideas already discussed here. Storage of data inherently comes with the risk of corruption, deletion, inconsistency, loss or error. A system that is built into the storage helps create a consistent inflow and outflow of data from the centralized storage, wherever that may be, in the cloud or at a private data center or computer at the office. Protected storage can be an added bonus to keep networks strong. Avoid losing critical data for your business or organization by implementing such a system. 

Firewalls

Firewalls are an absolute must have for protecting against data breaches, especially at the enterprise level. Data protection doesn’t exist without a firewall. In fact, they work so well that authoritarian regimes such as China use them. Their technology is referred to as “The Great Firewall” in the west, a nod to the country’s historical Great Wall. Firewalls are a network security system. It monitors and routes all network traffic coming and going out of the pipeline. Security rules are set by a cybersecurity professional to determine the qualifications of entry and exit basically. It acts like a barrier in between any network, especially when connecting to the Internet.

Authentication and Authorization

Authentication and authorization are similar terms in the world of information technology, computing and cybersecurity. Authentication is a method of confirming the identity of an entity trying to access a network once certain credentials have been identified and verified in the network. Once authenticated, a user can be authorized to access certain parts of a network. Two-factor authentication (2FA) is an example of this. A user must authenticate their login to a network using a separate device the network associates with the identity of the user to verify their authorization (entry). Use 2FA and other such methods for data protection best practices. 

Encryption

Encryption is probably the most discussed and constantly evolving solution in all of cybersecurity, along with monitoring of course. Encryption is the process of securing communications across a network using certain types of cryptography. Homomorphic encryption is one such example of a hot topic in cybersecurity. These methods use public and private keys to gain entry to certain parts of a computer network, especially regarding the Internet and the cloud. Organizations, especially enterprises, ought to use encryption methods that are strong and proven to protect critical data from threats. Use professional tools with a winning customer reputation and avoid claims from obscure services. 

Endpoint Protection

Encryption leads us to endpoint protection. Endpoint protection is the key to protecting unwanted access to the network at the very mouths of the inflow and outflow pipelines. This is what encryption helps protect against. Organizations need to understand how their methods of endpoint protection keep their organization’s data secure, whether in the cloud or their private data servers onsite. When discussing the issue with tech and IT teams, be sure to really dive deep into endpoint protection and assess vendors for their commitment to providing solid threat protection and again, make sure your policies, procedures and protocols reflect this organization wide. 

Conclusion

Cybersecurity solutions are, or should be, top of mind for consumers and commercial and even non-commercial organizations. Privacy and security are becoming more important as the world evolves across the digital landscape. Consumers, companies, groups, non-profits and governments should implement strong security and access policies to understand data protection, create best practices, provide for data loss prevention, consider strorage with built-in data protection, implement firewalls properly, use authentication for authorization, use encryption and understand all you can about endpoint protection.

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