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March 04, 2016

How to Protect Your Company From Data Breaches

Whatever your industry, the security (or lack thereof) of your organization’s data could ultimately dictate your organization’s success. If you’re an IT professional, the security of that data may dictate your own success, as well.

In 2015, there were 781 data breaches recorded by the ID Theft Center. This marked the second highest year on record since the organization started tracking breaches in 2005 – only 2014 had more breaches with 783. The prevailing reason for data breaches is still financial gain for hackers. However, in 2015, new motives became more prevalent.

“This compromised data can now be used to compel behavior changes in breached individuals and groups,” said Eva Velasquez, the President and CEO of ITRC. “This data is also being used for social justice purposes, and even to embarrass our nation.”

So what can your organization do to reduce the chance of being the victim of a data breach? Here are a few steps you can take:

1. Conduct a risk assessment to determine what information your company holds that would be valuable to hackers. Then make securing that data your priority.
2. Train employees on their role in preventing data breaches. Institute best practices when it comes to using laptops and mobile devices outside the company network. Also, make sure employees know the inherent risk of reusing passwords for both work and personal accounts.
3. Be proactive in protecting your information. Don’t just set up perimeter security and assume you’re safe; make sure your organization has unified data protection policies across all services, networks and endpoints.
4. Ensure that access to your network is secured. Utilize firewalls to prevent outsiders from accessing your network. Similarly, use a Virtual Private Network (VPN) to give access to authorized individuals outside the network.
5. Consider moving data to a cloud that is hosted and managed by a third-party provider, such as QTS. Cloud computing companies are in the business of securing data and ensuring that they are up-to-date with the latest security protocols.

If you take the necessary steps to secure your sensitive data, you can greatly reduce your risk of falling victim to a data breach. QTS is in the business of helping organizations with their data security needs. For more information on how QTS can solve your data needs, call us toll-free at 877.QTS.DATA or follow us on Twitter @DataCenters_QTS.
security, hacker, breach