Cybercrimes are rising rapidly and sometimes it’s not by the outsider, but maybe someone who you trusted all the data and information with. The outside attack is usually in the form of data theft, intellectual property theft, security breaches and hacking while the insider usually utilizes the computer to access and commit fraud, cyberstalking, cyberbullying or insider trading.
All these acts result not only in company loss but someone else could be accused of something they didn’t commit. All these matters should be tackled to ensure data and property safety.
Today, 99% of businesses depend on digital data storage and transfer methods, they need to recruit more people and provide access to workplace computers.
A larger number of businesses need to store client information and protecting them is a huge challenge. Proactive steps must be taken up by the head of the departments and the hiring authority to prevent such crimes.
Your employees, your assets
Your employees are your assets. The crucial role they play in your company’s growth is noteworthy. But they must be vetted thoroughly before placing them in your company. While they are considered a strength, there are some risks associated with it. Here are some keys to consider when granting them access to electronic information, human and physical security.
- Conduct a pre-employment screening test. There is no alternative to this as it is a vetting process to identify the employee. For people working in the IT and other information-sensitive areas, a background check beside the screening test is of vital importance. For such institutes, their main focus should be on any records of “hacktivism” or any similar activity. Borderline activities should also be examined.
- Staff should be restricted access only to the information appropriate to their roles. For some larger companies, limited staff access is impractical or may require wider access. In such cases, the transactions can be recorded, monitored, logged and audited. Audit logs can be reviewed by a third party to ensure no discrimination occurs and the staffs are not under anyone’s favouritism.
- Conduct background checks on the present employee. It guarantees the organization’s security. Some organizations carry it only during the hiring process. While it certifies their present nature, it doesn’t promise the same about their future behaviour. Periodical character checks are good practice. There’s no rule saying you cannot carry a background on a present worker. People tend to change under pressure or their circumstances may change leading them to the wrong path. A robust background check provides all the key information about someone you are considering to hire. Also, collaborating with a reliable screening service provider will eliminate the task of waiting for the results.
- Keeping an eye on the potential employee’s behaviour in the workplace and their colleagues may not be of much help. It has been found that the millennials are more excited about new challenges and are restless, the employers must keep their eyes open to find any susceptive interaction in the workplace. Not all satisfied employees can be trusted with sensitive official information.
- Using encrypted login details is another way for data protection. The logon details will be meant only for the authorized person and should not be shared with anyone else. Also, consider having a unique password or login system is an option. Setting up a one-time or single-use password can also be an alternative.
- Do not put a price on safety. Safety doesn’t have a price tag where it matters the most. While a vigorous police check can be a little costly, it is totally worth it. An increasing number of organisations in Australia for example are using online police check services like australian national character check as part of their pre-screening processes. Do not compromise the safety of your organization because prevention is better than cure and regret. Keep in mind, the employee is going to collaborate with all the other workers, share a part of the cybersecurity of your company and utilize any company property. The cost of damage limitation is always higher than risk prevention.
- As the need to hire more people during this pandemic has become a necessity for some businesses, they are reluctant to carry out a criminal history check on the person they are considering to hire. It is a big NO. As they are in a hurry to fill up their vacant position and not undertake a check, there is a rise in the cybercrime cases.
- Communicating with the employees is a way to understand them and their thoughts. Keep the options open to communicate independently. A question dropbox, suggestion box or complaint box is a good way. Also, a whistleblower can act as a conveyor for invisible crimes.
- A very crucial step is to deactivate the employees work email address or any other network system associated with them when they finish employment with the organization or if their roles and responsibilities change. This includes modifying passwords such as bank account passwords, office WiFi password, shared email accounts, any software or app used by the company, alarm codes, user accounts and remote access. Keep a track of the details and update them whenever needed to. All the systems the employee had access to should be noted down in a checklist so as to not forget any single system.
Data protection and deploying cybersecurity should become a part of every organization. It should be monitored at least half-yearly as a part of their onboarding process. Here are some tips to protect your company’s data.
- Install an effective, good antivirus program and always keep it updated;
- Do not open spam, suspicious or unsolicited emails. Emails are the biggest source of malware and viruses in the digital system;
- Company data should be kept confidential at its best. Avoid posting any information on social media. It does more harm than any good.
- Company information should never be transmitted through unencrypted or unsecured servers. A padlock key beside the website link is an indicator of the site’s safety.
- Scammers have many ways to scam people. Phishing, frauds, scams and hacking are their general methods. Do not jump into conclusion if something sounds unsuspicious.
- Educate your team on what to expect and the necessary step to take up in those situations. Train them about the risks, it’s mitigation technique, the outcomes and importance of protecting against the risk.