Tuesday, December 13, 2016

What Encryption Can Do for Your Business

Your business doesn't have to handle top secret government files to need encryption.  You have a responsibility to your customers, vendors, stakeholders, and employees to keep their data safe, and you need to protect your business information from competitors.  To maintain your reputation, the people you do business with must have confidence in your ability to keep data secure and use it wisely. 

Consider all the ways encryption can protect you from loss of business and reputation:

Neutralize Hackers
Encryption can prevent the use of your information by hackers.  Even if they get into to your network, they won't be able to use the information they find if it is encrypted.

Note that encryption cannot prevent access like a firewall can, but by rendering your data useless to prying eyes, it can eliminate the use of stolen data by hackers.

Protect External Drives
If your company backs up data on external hard drives, that means information that you store is neatly packaged for an enterprising thief.  You could be subject to theft of those drives.  This includes USB devices. 

Encryption makes it impossible to read your data, so a compromised external drive will not harm your company.

Secure Internal Hard Drives

The drives in your computers are some of the most vulnerable access points in your entire information network.  Hackers can come in through email accounts or your internet connection and get directly into your hard drives. This makes any information a user has stored vulnerable to theft. 

Encryption can secure information while it is being stored.  This process is automatic, so that the user doesn't have to remember do it.  Such encryption provides timely protection as data is created.

Make Cloud Storage Safer
Storing data in the cloud presents some problems.  One of the most dangerous situations is sharing cloud storage space with other firms.  Any hacker who gets into other companies' data on a shared cloud server has access to your information.

Encryption is your best line of defense to these "back door" cloud hackers.  Your information remains unreadable, and hackers may move on to less vigilant prey.

Some cloud storage services have decryption keys, and if those are stolen, your information may be read by intruders.  This mean you shouldn't rely entirely on the cloud service's encryption.  You can add an extra layer of encryption on your own to help protect your stored data from stolen decryption keys.

Hide Internet Traffic

Using public internet access for laptops makes your data vulnerable.  The same applies to remote employees who use their home Wi-Fi connections. 

A virtual private network (VPN) encrypts all communications to and from a laptop.  The network is protected.  Requiring a VPN connection for all employees helps lock out criminals who use the internet to attack companies.

Guard Email

Email can be the biggest leak in your security system.  Employees may send sensitive information through emails, and if this information is intercepted, your company and your customers could be at risk.

Secure email applications can protect email communications not only while they are being sent, but also while they sit in inboxes. You receive an added benefit, because encryption means unauthorized recipients, such as friends and acquaintances of employees, will not be able to read company email.

Lock Lost Devices
Half of data breaches come from lost or stolen USB drives, laptops, phones, and tablets. Not only should you make sure that each of these devices is password-protected, but you also should have employees use encryption applications for sending, receiving, and storing data.

Neutralizing Employee Mistakes
Employees may grant access to a file by attaching it or giving a link to a non-employee.  Encryption will nullify the effect of this error.

Safeguarding File Transfers
When you send files through a file transfer service, data thieves can intercept them in transit.  Even a secured network can be vulnerable. Encrypting files before you send them ensures that if they are stolen, they will be unreadable.

Encryption technology is readily available and relatively inexpensive, especially when you compare the price of encryption to the cost of lost data and lost business due to thieves or error.   All businesses today have some kind of internet vulnerability, and enterprising data thieves are always seeking new access points to steal your data.  Make sure that if they get into your network or devices, the data they retrieve will be rendered useless by encryption.
if you would like to know more about how Bit by Bit can help please call us at 877.860.5831 x190 or email.