Even though companies large and small continue their use of electronic document management solutions to improve the efficiency of their operations and optimise the handling of increasingly large amounts of data, the significant risk of a data breach remains. But how is this possible when IT managers have such advanced technology that’s been designed to prevent a breach?
Low-Tech Blunders, High-Cost Mistakes
Most often, it’s the mistakes made during the handling of information-storing items which leads to data breaches. In large organisations where there may be thousands of devices, the potential for a data breach lies in the hands of each and every employee. However, this doesn’t need to be the case when a policy is in place for the proper handling of this kind of inventory.
In the case of hard drives, the basic understanding is that these only exist in forms that allow them to be attached to a computer via an external device, or inside the computer as an internal drive. This is a dangerous perception, as hard drives also exist in many printers, photocopiers and scanners used by company employees. The internal hard drives on these peripheral devices are there to record every document printed, scanned or photocopied. In companies where each employee needs to scan, copy or photocopy several documents daily, the amount of information stored on these devices could easily reach into the hundreds of thousands.
How equipment is obtained can be another very common mistake made. For example, if your company only leases their printers and photocopiers, then the security of data can be at the mercy of the company you’re leasing from. Your IT department may be prohibited from erasing the hard drives of these machines.
You Can’t do it All
One person can do only so much. For example, just because you are your company’s IT manager, doesn’t mean you have the time to encrypt 20,000 employee devices, even if your department is well-staffed. This is where an outside resource can help. An off-site storage service for devices and documents can ensure that all data, digital or not is properly stored prior to disposing of it.
There are several benefits to enlisting the help of a service, including the fact that it can save your department and ultimately your company an incredible amount of time and money, not to mention eliminating all worry that records will endure the kind of mishandling that leads to large data breaches.
Don’t Leave Yourself Open
Unless you have sophisticated software that allows you to erase completely and overwrite data on hard drives and other devices, simply wiping and then restoring a drive is not enough to ensure complete erasure.
At the very least, there should be something in place which requires you to engage in regular inventory and asset disposal. One way to accomplish this is to consolidate important information stored on drives, and then ensure that media like hard drives are properly and regularly disposed of. There are several ways to do this, including hard drive shredding, data degaussing and data wiping. Find out more about ensuring data security here - How To Ensure Data Security When Using It Recycling Services