Three ways to secure your data
In business, the value of information and knowledge is well understood. That is why companies are always in the lookout for different ways of securing their data. Read on to learn what businesses can do to keep their data secure.
1. Data Encryption
In data encryption, a computer program uses a mathematical algorithm to change text into characters that cannot be read and understood without an unlock key. In practice, encrypted data can only be accessed by authorised people who have the key/password. There are different methods of encryption, and most of them are fairly easy to execute. Both localised data (in hard disks or other storage devices) and data in transit (for example, emails) can be secured this way.
One of the benefits of encryption is that it protects organizations and individuals from identity theft, even if the storage medium is stolen. It also protects sensitive data from being accessed by unauthorized personnel. In some industries such as the banking industry, there are data protection regulations that necessitate encryption of customers' and other sensitive information.
Best of all, those who have secured their data have peace of mind and go about their business without security worries.
For networked computers, and most machines are networked these days, a firewall adds a layer of protection that is not easy to come using other data security measures. Any computer connected to the internet can be potentially hacked into by unauthorised persons, but a firewall usually prevents that.
In essence, a firewall acts as a door through which information must pass. This door can block or allow different types of information according to how it has been programmed. Most firewalls are also designed to keep logs of all failed log in attempts or even raise alarms when dangerous activities are suspected. There are hardware firewalls (also called firmware firewalls) as well as software firewalls.
Hardware firewalls are usually located in home routers and tend to come from the manufactures preconfigured, though they can be customised further. Software firewalls are mostly used to protect computers from dangerous internet content or access. Firewalls are available from different manufactures.
3. Physical Security
The measures above are not foolproof, so a layer of physical deterrent is necessary. It is advisable to restrict those who have access to removable data storage mediums. Access logs should also be kept. Physical security starts from door locks as well as safes/combinations within which the data storage mediums are kept.
Apart from providing physical deterrents, locks also prevent opportunistic crimes because some people might be tempted to access unsecured data just because they can do it, but they will not try to access locked up data.
These are some of the data security methods that businesses use today, but the list is not exhaustive. It is also good to use passwords, install antivirus, and use antispyware, among other measures. Since no single method is foolproof, it is advisable to use several deterrents concurrently. Even a one-time breach can result in immeasurable damage, so the sooner data is secured the better.
Ted Romberg is an internet security researcher and developer. He enjoys sharing his research and findings on various tech blogs. Learn more about colocation services, visit the link.
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