Crisis Prevention: Guarding Personal Info in the Workplace

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    Are you doing all you can to keep private information secure?

    Just about every organization keeps private information regarding customers, employees, or both on hand. With attendant responsibility to keep that information secure. While it is true that skilled hackers may be able to penetrate any system, it’s important that you take every precaution to prevent that. This is not only for the up-front reason of making it more difficult for anyone who means harm to break in, but also that if a hack does occur you can point to your practices and say with honesty, “We made sure our security practices were those recommended by a security firm with impeccable credentials” or “our security practices were very much in keeping with industry best practices.”

    The folks at ShareFile brought in experts to put together a list of the 5 key principles of an information security plan, which they state as:

    1. Inventory your data. Keep track of all personal information stored in your files and computers.
    2. Trim down and minimize. Store only the data that is crucial for operation of your business.
    3. Keep it locked. Make sure to lock your computers and file storage to keep information secured.
    4. Remove what is unnecessary. Trim down non-essential data and do away with the irrelevant and unimportant.
    5. Be prepared for the worst. Devise a strategy for dealing with unfortunate events involving a security breach.

    If you’re looking to assemble your own plan, or want to double-check that an existing one covers all the bases, ShareFile’s full Data Security Guide is a worthwhile read.

    For more resources, see the Free Management Library topic: Crisis Management

    [Jonathan Bernstein is president of Bernstein Crisis Management, Inc., an international crisis management consultancy, author of Manager’s Guide to Crisis Management and Keeping the Wolves at Bay – Media Training. Erik Bernstein is vice president for the firm, and also editor of its newsletter,Crisis Manager]