As the lines between work and play blurs due to the advances of technology, it becomes more apparent that ‘Information Security’ within the workplace is not just the IT department’s issue.
Information or data is a business enabler, it enables operations and productivity so, the security of it should be viewed as essential and promoted throughout the company – but, in most cases it is not.
Is this because we instinctively protect what we can see in front of us like buildings, personnel, hardware, the tangible assets but, we neglect the intangibles such as information because we struggle to see the physical value of it? Or is it the general attitude towards data security, the idea that we just need to do enough to meet regulations and compliance standards?
IT Security should be seen as a task to minimise risk for an organisation
This risk management is not just limited to the IT department or within the office because let’s face it, many of us do work a little when we get home even if its just checking our emails.
‘As many as 49% of individuals would use their personal device for work, found in a recent Norton Report’.
Employees use of unauthorised personal mobile devices can be a threat because it is an unknown object on the IT network. For example, if a user was to save business data onto an unauthorised device and then it was infected by malware, the data could end up in the wrong hands!
However, it is not about the IT department forbidding personal devices – if devices are approved then it is safe to have on the network. It’s all about having policies in place and training employees on how to access business data securely. The training should not be limited to the use of mobile devices but, general IT security practices i.e. always encrypt email containing sensitive data or never write login credentials on a piece of paper.
It is also important to ensure staff are aware of ‘Social Engineering’ because no matter how protected an IT Network is, there is always the possibility of external threats getting in, like CryptoWall which tricks users into opening infected attachments, exploit security gaps in Sliverlight, Flash and Java then, similar to CryptoLocker it will encrypt your files and demand a ransom.
Regular IT network assessments are recommended – not only will it help protect and minimise potential security risks, it can also be an opportunity to assess the efficiency levels of the network.
There will always be a possibility of a breach in security for every company, it could be due to a cyber attack, human error, social engineering etc but,if risk management is a common goal amongst every employee not just the IT department, it can help manage and minimise security risks in the long run.
To find out more about data protection or IT network security you can contact our consultants on 0845 603 5552 or drop us an email on firstname.lastname@example.org