If you have a company, chances are you keep a log of your customers’ personally identifiable information (PII) such as names, addresses, phone numbers, credit card numbers, etc… which is readily available to perform business functions. If such is the case, what steps do you take to protect all this sensitive data? It is important to keep this information private and secure, otherwise it could end up in the hands of people who wish to do harm, whether it be financial, cyber, or another form. Leaving this information unprotected and susceptible to thieves and/or hackers could mean the loss of loyal customers and their trust, and possibly even a lawsuit. Keeping sensitive information protected and out of the hands of would-be thieves not only protects you and your customers, but it’s a good business practice as well. Let’s take a look at some steps you can take to protect this information:
- Inventory – The first step to protecting this information is to know what information you have and where it is located. In our current digital age, the majority of this information is probably on your computer. To this effect, inventory any and all electronics which store data. The next step in this process is to identify: who sends information, how your company receives and processes it, the kind of information you collect and where it is kept and, finally, who has access to it. You should focus most of your attention on personally identifiable information, as thieves will mostly use this to commit fraud and/or identity theft.
- Minimize – The next step to take in protecting information is to really consider if your business needs to keep it in the first place. If not, make adjustments to the electronics which receive information and dispose of the information securely and properly. If, however, you find the need to keep this information, only keep it for as long as necessary.
- Keeping it Secure – Once you determine the information you need to keep, be sure you have a proper procedure for doing so safely and securely. This can be done in one of the following four ways: physical security, electronic security, employee training, and the security protocols used by contractors and service providers. Whichever you choose, be sure to store the information properly and securely, keeping up-to-date with any modifications or updates on the best practices of storing information.
- Proper Disposal – When you’ve decided to get rid of data, what do you do? How do you get rid of it? You can dispose of physical paper records by shredding, burning, or pulverizing. If you’re looking to dispose of electronics which contain sensitive client information, use software to clean out the hard drives and disks where this information is stored. Be sure all employees follow the same procedures.
- Plan for the Future – Security breaches are a threat to any company and its clients. Implement an effective security plan to combat any security attack or breach. In the case of a compromised computer, the first step should be to disconnect it from the network. If a security incident does occur, investigate it immediately to determine and close up threats and vulnerabilities. Lastly, know whom to notify both inside and outside the company in the case of a security breach. This may include customers, law enforcement, and/or credit bureaus . Consult your attorney as well, as a number of states have laws and regulations in place to properly address data breaches.
(Initial or Renewal Course based on the 2015 AHA Guidelines)
Basic Life Support (BLS) is the foundation for saving lives after cardiac arrest. This course teaches both single-rescuer and team basic life support skills for application in both in-facility and prehospital settings. This course is designed for healthcare professionals and other personnel who need to know how to perform CPR and other basic cardiovascular life support skills.
In addition, BLS training can be appropriate for first responders, such as police officers and firefighters, as well as for laypeople whose work brings them into contact with members of the public, such as school, fitness center, or hotel and restaurant employees.
Students must pass a written exam and skills test in order to qualify for a BLS Course Completion Card.
Upon successful completion of this course, students will receive a completion cad valid for 2 years.
Conveniently scheduled on Saturday, please choose the session that works best for you.
“Data breach. We’ve been hacked!” Two phrases that every IT department dreads hearing. According to a recent study by IBM Security, 2.5 quintillion bytes of data are created daily. That is an immense amount of information to protect from hackers, inside thefts, poor security protocols, and stolen or lost media. Data security, therefore, is a critical part of protecting data such as databases, applications or reports across business and personal environments. How prevalent are security attacks? Let’s investigate security statistics and who is commonly attacked.
Security by-the-numbers – The Global Security Report by Trustwave sheds light on the widespread and growing number of security breaches worldwide.
- 71% of security breaches target small businesses – small businesses are usually the least equipped to protect against an attack. Most hackers will prey on the weak.
- 69% of cyber attacks target retailers and restaurants – due to the large amount of sensitive credit card data that passes through these types of small businesses, they have become a prime target for profit seeking attackers.
- 28,765 records are stolen on average per data breach – this statistic shows that businesses are storing more sensitive information than they should – more information than is safe.
- USD40 million – This is the estimated cost in US dollars due to security breaches.
While small businesses are common targets for hackers and cyber criminals, large corporations are not immune to security attacks. For example here are some of the more recent data breaches just this year alone.
- Anthem, the worlds second largest health insurer reported that the names, dates of birth, social security numbers, member ID’s, addresses, phone numbers, email addresses and employment information of 80 million members was compromised.
- Home Deport reported this year that malware was installed on cash register systems across 2,200 stores that siphoned credit card details of 56 million customers. It is believed that Russian hackers are responsible. It is possible that the hackers are the same group that attacked Target, Sally Beauty, and P.F. Changs.
- Target investigators believe that data was stolen via software installed on computers. The software was able to gather credit card information each time a credit card was swiped during a purchase. It is believed that 40 million customers were effected.
- Ebay, one of the largest online retailers reported one of the largest breaches this year with hackers using stolen credentials to access a database containing all user records. 145 million people were impacted.
Data security is a topic that all companies, large and small need to address. Check back for tomorrow’s blog where we will continue our discussion of data security protection.