How to find and stay on top of your company’s sensitive data.

With so much data being stored by your company, how can you prevent the most sensitive details leaking?

The digital age means that businesses are collecting, and storing, more data than ever before. And it’s getting bigger too; the majority of UK companies calculate the volume of data held increases by an average of 27% per year.

But the challenge of data storage is more than simply finding enough space to hold it all. Your business is also responsible for protecting it from loss – particularly when it comes to sensitive personal information about your customers and employees.

What sensitive data do you actually have?

Using services like G Suite, SMEs have improved their data storage practices. In theory, everything is being stored in one place securely – the Cloud.

Unfortunately, nothing is that simple. Employees have a nasty habit of copying data and storing duplicate files outside the Cloud. Just think about the average laptop user – how many files do they have saved to their desktop, or in the “My Documents” folder on the local system. When was the last time you cleared out your Downloads folder?

These duplicates present two problems. First, because these files are stored outside the central system, you probably don’t even know they exist. Second, you don’t know what the files are, let alone whether they contain sensitive data.

And as the amount of data increases, the task of discovering these details becomes even harder.

Risk Intelligence – discovering what you have

To help overcome the challenge of uncovering the data you have, Kimbley IT has introduced a new Risk Intelligence service.

Our team will scan your entire network to create a report that shows you where data is being held, allowing you to take action to prevent its loss. The report also reveals the type of data being held – like credit card numbers and personal addresses – allowing you to accurately calculate the risk should it be stolen or exposed. We can even attach a financial value so you can see exactly what the impact on your business would be if your defences are compromised.

Remember that when the General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR) come into force in May next year, losing personal data could attract a fine of up to 4% of your global turnover.

Regain control of your data

Armed with the Risk Intelligence by Kimbley IT report, you will have a clear action plan that allows you to regain control of your data estate. You can arrange for the most sensitive data to be moved back to the correct location immediately for instance.

With this new insight on how your business is mismanaging data, you will be able to build an acceptable use policy and procedures for your employees to follow, so that data is stored in the correct locations.

The report also exposes flaws in your security provisions, like PCs that are missing critical security patches for instance. You (or your IT support provider) can then create a plan to ensure that the relevant software patches are installed and maintained, further reducing the risk of your systems being compromised by cybercriminals.

What you should do next

Your business simply cannot afford to leak personal information. Apart from the enormous fines attached to the GDPR, 58 percent of customers have said they’d avoid a provider that has recently experienced a data or security breach.

Faced by enormous fines and the potential loss of half your customer base, can you really afford to not know where all your data is stored?

To learn more about Risk Intelligence by Kimbley IT, or the dangers of storing data insecurely, please get in touch.