7 Components of an Effective Data Protection Strategy

Your organization’s data is at constant risk. With cybercrime of all types on the rise, you need to put an effective data protection strategy into place. Read on to discover the seven essential components your strategy should include.

Why Your Organization Needs a Data Protection Strategy

How valuable is your organization’s data? If you’re like most organizations, you use the data you collect to run your business over the long term and on a day-to-day basis. That data also contains confidential information about your business processes, your employees, and your customers. If that data were to suddenly become unavailable or fall into the wrong hands, you could be in big trouble.

According to IBM’s Cost of a Data Breach Report, the average cost of a data breach reached $4.24 million in 2020. Forbes reports that, from 2019 to 2020, ransomware increase by 435% and malware in general increased by 358%.

Given the increase in and high cost of cybercrime, it’s imperative that your organization put an effective data protection policy into place.

Devising an Effective Data Protection Strategy

Cybercriminals are smart and crafty and always devising new ways to breach even the most robust cyber defenses. That means you need to continuously develop new and improved ways to protect your data. With that in mind, here are the seven essential components of an effective data protection strategy.

1. Data Risk Analysis

Before you put data protection defenses in place you need to know what you’re defending. This entails conducting a full audit of all the data stored by your organization – what it is, its value to your organization, where it’s stored, who has access to it, and so on. You also need to evaluate your current cybersecurity position and determine the most likely and significant potential threats to that data. This will help you determine what elements you need to strengthen going forward.

2. Data Backup and Recovery

A key component of any data protection plan is the ability to recover from any data breach or attack. This requires regular backup of all key data and systems so that you can restore those data and system in the event of a cyber incident. You need to determine what data needs to be backed up, how often, and where. It’s also important to develop comprehensive disaster recovery and business continuity plans.

3. Data Breach Prevention

It goes without saying that you need to take all reasonable precautions to protect your valuable data from various types of breaches. You want to prevent all unauthorized access by both external and internal parties and block attacks on your network and infrastructure. This typically entails employing antivirus and antispyware utilities, firewalls and other perimeter security hardware and software, and other similar tools.

4. Data Access Management

Another important component for protecting against unauthorized access is robust data access management. This means applying strong data access controls, so that only users who need access to particular data get that access. A Zero Trust approach is recommended, employing the concept of “never trust, always verify.”

5. Data Storage Management

Strong security is needed when moving data from one location to another. That includes transferring data from a local network to the cloud, from the cloud to remote users, and from user to user. Managing every aspect of data storage – especially cloud storage – is imperative to fending off potential data breaches.

6. Data Standards and Regulatory Compliance

Complying with standards and regulations is an important part of any data protection strategy. Various industries have their own regulations concerning data privacy and security that your organization must adhere to. In addition, governments both domestic and foreign require compliance with their data protection laws. For example, the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) applies to all companies doing business with companies and citizens within the EU, even if your organization is based in the U.S. Noncompliance can result in large fines.

7. Data Encryption

Finally, data encryption needs to be a part of your data protection strategy. This means encrypting both data at rest and data in transit, so that malicious actors won’t be able to read any data to which they might gain access. Your organization’s encryption plans should include not just data but also all employee communications via text, voice, and video. For best security, employ end-to-end encryption for all communications and data transfers so information stays encrypted throughout the entire process.

Employ Wickr as Part of Your Data Protection Strategy

Wickr’s secure communications and collaboration platform should be part and parcel of your organization’s data protection strategy. Wickr employs end-to-end encryption and other military-grade security to ensure that text, voice, and video communications and data files cannot be intercepted in transit. Employ Wickr alongside the other components of your data protection strategy to best protect your organization’s communications, collaborations, and data storage.

Contact Wickr today to learn more about developing an effective data and communications protection strategy for your organization.