Protecting Your Company's Data from the Unexpected

Whether you sell beading supplies or finished jewelry, one thing is for sure when it comes to any business--you need to take precautionary measures to protect your data. Even though it might seem like something a small business owner doesn't have to be concerned with, every entrepreneur needs to understand the importance of keeping their client, employee and partners' data safe.

First, it's important to be mindful of which type of data is most sensitive and needs your attention when it comes to protection. Yahoo! reports that product specifications should be kept secure at all costs. This means making sure no one (in addition to competitors) gets a hold of the information that makes your products special.

Your mailing lists and other customer information should always be a priority when it comes to securing data. When doing business with you, clients expect that you will keep their data safe, whether it's something as simple as an email address or more important such as a credit card number. If you happen to lose this data and it leaks to the public, the reputation of your beading company will take a hit.

Finally, it's important to make sure that your server is as secure as possible. This is the gateway between you and the Internet--much of your business information will flow through your server and allowing it to be easily penetrated can result in a breach of data. A secure server will ideally include passwords and some sort of firewall that can protect everyone who uses it on a regular basis.

It can seem overwhelming to think about how you're going to protect important business data, but taking the time to utilize proper precautionary measures can save you hassle in the future. Here are some of the simplest and most effective ways to protect your information.
1. Use a backup system
Yahoo! reports that one of the easiest ways to keep your data safe and protected from the unexpected is through a backup system. It's crucial for entrepreneurs to have a backup system in the event of technical failures, such as a loss of power or the shutdown of equipment. However, a backup can also come in handy if data is lost through other means, such as theft.

If you are unsure of how to operate a backup system and use it on a regular basis, the National Federation of Independent Business states that you might want to consider using a third-party system for all of your needs. There are many service providers on the market dedicated to working with entrepreneurs who are looking for an efficient way to save their data.

2. Consider encryptions and passwords
Whether your company relies solely on the Internet or you hardly going online, it's important to keep whatever data comes through your business private at all costs. The easiest way to do this is to encrypt passwords on everything from computers to point of sale machinery at your company. This not only keeps your data safe, but makes sure that it doesn't fall into the wrong hands.

3. Use a cloud system
In the Digital Age, more services and devices are being created regularly to benefit entrepreneurs and give them the tools they need to work efficiently--this means conducting routine business operations without having to worry about breached data.

One way that you can store information off-site is through a cloud system. Many cloud systems are now being developed to give business owners a place to keep everything from standard documents to important client invoices.

CRN.com reports that cloud systems can be beneficial in many ways--in addition to keeping your data off-site, they often have state-of-the-art firewalls and security measures. Many cloud systems also have additional barriers in place. For example, it may lock a thief out if he continues to try using inaccurate passwords to log into your data.

4. Be willing to spend money and educate yourself on security measures
Much of what it takes to keep your company data's safe will involve familiarizing yourself with security news. Staying up to date on the latest theft measures and security breaches can help you keep an eye out for vulnerability within your own company. The Young Entrepreneur Council reports that it is also important to be willing to spend a few bucks on necessary security measures.
"Entrepreneurs want to be thrifty and save money, but this should not apply when it comes to protecting critical data," Timothy Sykes, CEO of Millionaire Media, told the news source. "Your business data and customer information are some of your most precious assets and the best security costs money."


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