Why Is Data Privacy More Important Today Than Ever?

Data is the most valuable asset of any business. Regardless of your industry, you absolutely must take care of your data, whether it’s financial reports, medical records, or a start-up business plan.

In this article, we’ll go back to the basics of data security, forgotten in the frenzy that has gripped the cybersecurity market. We’ll examine why, despite increasing attention to cybersecurity, the number of data breaches is steadily increasing and how this affects data security processes.

We’ll also discuss specific steps you can take to strengthen the security of your sensitive data without resorting to multiple, complex security technologies or spending too much of your budget.

Why is data security more important today than ever?

There are several reasons to spend time and money on data protection and security. When developing security strategies, modern businesses face the following challenges:

Cyberattacks. Cybercrime involves a variety of techniques: ransomware, malware as a service, advanced persistent threats, state-sponsored attacks, insider threats, and more.

Cybercriminals are having great success. In the first 9 months of 2019 alone, 5,183 breaches were reported, with 7.9 billion documents reported as exposed, according to the Data Breach QuickView study.

As cybercrimes evolve, so do information protection solutions. Equally important are preventive measures such as firewall configurations that limit suspicious inbound and outbound traffic, as well as solutions and procedures in the event of a security breach.

Current best practices are to assume that you have been breached and ensure that you have adequate attack detection and investigation tools and procedures in place, as well as redundancies, disaster recovery solutions and other recovery support solutions.

Take steps to discover and classify all your critical data, protect data with encryption, back it up, and control your storage spaces as much as possible.

Related article: The Basics of Data Security

Compliance issues. Companies are under tremendous pressure from a variety of global data protection laws and regulations. As companies collect sensitive personal information, they must ensure that processing operations are secure and that controls and security measures are in place.

Organizations that process personal data are subject to compliance regulations, depending on the type of information assets and the industry in which the company operates. The scope of these regulations also includes security controls on third parties, such as vendors or service providers.

Companies must comply with regulations

Compliance with regulations is critical to the reputation and financial well-being of organizations.

Legal regulations are stringent. The requirements of the GDPR, for example, require reporting of data breaches. The appointment of a data protection officer (DPO) is also required.

At the same time, companies cannot collect personal data without the consent of data subjects. Financial losses, heavy fines, legal problems, reputational damage, data loss and business disruption are among the most devastating consequences of a data or security breach for a company, not to mention the loss of investor and customer confidence.

In addition to imposing fines, data protection authorities can issue warnings and reprimands, and – in some extreme cases – ban the organization from processing personal data.

The good news is that more and more companies are making it a priority to better protect the data they process and store – even if they are often motivated by fears of reputational loss and hefty fines. In addition, regulatory requirements often serve as a guide to developing a robust data security program.

Three major challenges for data security

The hype around cybersecurity leads companies to believe that information security is too complicated for them, but that if they buy all these state-of-the-art solutions, they will be able to protect their data from the latest cybersecurity threats.

This also leads to the misconception that there is a panacea for every possible threat, and that ever-increasing budgets must be spent on it. However, the top three challenges that can hinder your data security are not related to the lack of artificial intelligence in your portfolio.

The good news is that more and more companies are making it a priority to better protect the data they process and store – even if they are often motivated by fears of reputational loss and hefty fines. In addition, regulatory requirements often serve as a guide to developing a robust data security program.

Challenge #1: Understaffed IT teams

One of the biggest problems is that most IT security departments are understaffed.

Often, there is only one IT person responsible for everything from managing downtime to resolving computer problems to protecting sensitive data. Even in large organizations, the IT team has so much work to do that they simply don’t have the time to look at the types of sensitive data they store and develop a plan to protect it.

Challenge #2: Limited budgets

Many organizations are not willing to spend a large portion of their budget on hiring new IT security hires or training their current employees on how to keep data secure.

It seems much cheaper and easier to buy a few tools that cybersecurity vendors say will protect data from multiple data security threats. This leads to the following problem:

Challenge #3: Spending on ineffective tools

Businesses often don’t know what kind of sensitive data they have, where it is, or if it is overexposed. But they buy a variety of different software to “protect” it. Then they find that the technologies they’ve hastily acquired don’t live up to the vendors’ promises or meet their own expectations.

For example, Cybersecurity Ventures forecasts that global spending on cybersecurity products and services reached $120 billion in 2018. This figure will cumulatively exceed $1 trillion by 2022, which corresponds to an 88% increase in global cybersecurity spending!

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