3 Mistakes to avoid when managing sensitive data

Your company is constantly exposed to security threats. At any time, a hacker could break into your computing environment, a contractor with malicious intent could download private information or an employee could mistakenly save upcoming merger and acquisition (M&A) plans to the wrong file share.

Threats like these are rooted in every industry. Although news headlines tend to focus on high-profile hacks on major healthcare providers, retailers, government agencies and financial services firms, every company houses sensitive and private information.

Don’t make the mistake of thinking that a breach couldn’t happen to your organization. If you catch your company abiding by one of the below common misconceptions about sensitive data protection and management, it’s time for a new strategy:

1. Most security breaches are caused by hackers, and we’re safe from them.

Only a third of data breaches are the result of targeted attacks by dedicated hackers. The other 67 percent of breaches are the result of insider threats – intentional or unintentional. Don’t forget that the Target data breach began with a contractor accessing confidential information.

2. We already have a data security solution in place, and it’s all we need.

Classic security solutions focus on the perimeter of your data, keeping the bad guys out and the sensitive information in. If those solutions can scan for sensitive data within your system, they usually require intrusive layered software that proves cumbersome, costly and complex. Faced with the today’s risk landscape, classic solutions fall short of providing sufficient protection for your private information.

By using data-aware solutions to identify risks and help manage data at the point of storage, your team can overcome resource constraints, productivity issues and even skills shortages that previously damaged your security posture.

3. If a breach happened, we could shut it down.

Many companies are unaware of a security breach while it’s taking place. Many breaches are not discovered for months after they occur, and companies only recognize its effects long after the threat has accessed the system and stolen critical files. By integrating sensitive data analysis into your storage layer, you can have timely and actionable information that allows you to lower costs, lower risks, simplify data management and reduce your overhead costs for complying with data privacy regulations and internal data governance policies.

Read more tips for managing sensitive data and confidential information.

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Perry Dickau

Former Director of Product Management for DataGravity, Perry provided guidance on product direction and development, as well as on technologies, standards, best practices, and industry trends for data governance, risk management, and compliance. He previously served as a product manager at AvePoint and holds a Bachelor of Science in electrical and computer engineering from the University of New Hampshire.