Articles - Data Protection
What does Data Protection mean to you?
Nowadays with all of our computerised workhorses, programs and gadgets we are generating, creating, storing and needing to safeguard new data all the time.
Data might be the information recently obtained about new clients, or images or music files. It could be quotes and letters or rough workings of a spreadsheet. It might be a presentation you've spent the last four weeks putting together or it could be the thousands of emails residing in your Inbox.
Whatever the data is and whatever machine it's on, it makes sense to keep a copy of it as there is nothing that’s guaranteed more than the fact your computer will at some point die on you, plus of course other risks such as accidental deletions, viruses, theft, flooding and fire.
Besides keeping a recent and up to date copy of your data safely backed up and in a secure location for when needed, it makes sense to ensure all critical files are encrypted – definitely in the backup version, though also perhaps the main copy residing on your machine if it’s personal.
Many sectors legislate and regulate according to the data protection act, so you may not be allowed to send your data overseas or you might need to ensure any files is fully encrypted – especially databases containing contact details.
As such, if your network has access from others who are not permitted to view specific files you will need to ensure certain areas are blocked off. Also if you are syncing information between machines or devices the security and integrity of any data and connections should be reviewed.
* Make a list of the different types of data you are generating on your computer? (i.e. documents, letters, spreadsheets, presentations, media, scanned files, databases, emails etc)
* Assess the best, most secure and convenient backup method for your files, ensuring it is carried out (at a minimum) each day for you, preferably automatically and the data will be encrypted and stored securely off-site for you.
* Consider what other data protection security interventions you may need to explore and put in place, such as putting a password on your computer (and changing this regularly), password protecting files or encrypting drives. Enhancing the firewalls on routers and Wi-Fi connectivity and also paying attention to any devices which have data synced between them.
As the saying goes, any chain is only as strong as the weakest link – so you could have incredibly efficient and strong protection on your pc or laptop but the data is synced to your mobile phone which is then lost, rendering all your files available and vulnerable.
The winter season is an ideal time and opportunity to assess your backup and data protection needs.
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