IMS Tech Blog

Sensitive Data Protection Practices You Shouldn't Ignore

Have you ever wondered why your parents refuse to shop online? It's not just because they are not caught up with the trends of the shopping industry.

Nearly all consumers are afraid of having their credit card information or personal identity stolen. This most likely occurs when entering your personal information online.

Businesses do their best to prevent their websites from being hacked to secure their consumer's private information. Although they do their best, sometimes it just isn't enough.

Sensitive data like credit card information can be stored safely, if critical protection practices are set in place. Here are seven of the most critical data protection practices.

  1. A Mobile Security Policy

Using unsecured public Wi-Fi is one of the most common ways to accidentally give out personal information to an unwanted source.

The best way to avoid this would be to use secure networks, not public Wi-Fi, and not using the free Wi-Fi provided in hotels and restaurants. When multiple people are using the same connection, there is a pool of information going into a system that can easily be shared with others accidentally.

  1. Compliance

With new regulations coming out on the daily, it is important for your legal and compliance teams to stay caught up on compliance trends. For 2018, the GDPR is the most known compliance regulation affecting companies.

The GDPR is a regulation protecting consumers from European countries from having their private information stolen. It is meant for things like protecting consumer’s credit cards from getting stolen, just as an example.

  1. Using Third-Party Suppliers

Scattering information across several different databases, and many different managers, will very likely produce user and system errors. This can lead to a leakage of personal information. As a consumer, you cannot prevent this unless you choose to only purchase from companies that fulfill all their products by themselves, which is not very likely.

As a company, be sure to streamline the supplying process as much as possible to prevent hiccups that can lead to a loss of customer security.

  1. Destroy After Completion

Depending on the organization, you can be in control of what consumer information is saved and what is deleted.

Take marketing firms for example. When they take over a social media channel of a customer, they will need the email and password information of the company. Once they have completed the work and the client is either done working with the company, or the password information is no longer needed, it is best practice to delete the information.

Keeping that information makes you responsible for any hacking that is done on their account through your server. Destroying the passwords and overall document shredding can free them of any hesitations of ending a contract and keeps you safe if anything were to happen to their accounts.

  1. Yearly Updates to Privacy Policy

Cover your butts before the error occurs. Of course, no company can be 100% certain that a consumer's private information is safe, but a privacy policy can be sure that the company is not at fault.

Whether you are a consumer or an employee of a company, you know that the privacy policy holds all the information that can be held against you in a court of law. Constantly performing audits and quick reviews will help you as a company stay up to date with the company’s information, as well as relieve you from any stress with the yearly compliance changes.

  1. Build Trust Through Honest Communication

One of the biggest reasons consumers leave a company is not because of prices, but because of trust.

If an order is messed up, a privacy law is broken, or a customer support rep was not helpful, take action. The consumer will leave if not treated with respect.

This is crucial in privacy because we need to prioritize the needs of our customers as we have pledged to do in our privacy policy. If a regulation was broken or a mistake was made, as a company, you need to put out something that shows you are aware and are working on a fix.

This is what will separate you from the others.

  1. Use the Latest Technology

Sometimes saving a buck or two is not worth it in the end.

If there is a new system that will streamline the purchasing process for your customers, or if it will increase the protection of your customers, you should consider it.

Too many times we see companies spend their hard earned money on their products, only to be lax on the type of security they implement to protect it and their customers. If your products are so great that everyone is wanting to buy them, you need to have a safe way for thousands of people to buy your products without losing any of their information.

Sensitive Data Prevention Practice Really Works

Although you may not be able to prevent a hacker from stealing a consumer’s credit card information or social security number 100% of the time, you can make it less likely that they will be able to do so in the first place.

Following these data prevention practices will bring safety to your website and allow your customers to feel safe purchasing your products.

After all, where would your company be without your customers? Contact one of our experienced staff to find out the latest, safest way to securely store your documents.

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