Why businesses need to pay attention to Data Protection Day

Following on from a year of high profile security breaches and coming ahead of the strict new EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), there could hardly be a more pressing time for organisations to pay attention to Data Protection Day.

The mounting number of breaches involving consumer financial and private data means the public is increasingly aware of their information being at risk, and much less willing to forgive businesses who betray their trust. The upcoming regulations from the EU will also see harsh punishments for companies failing to protect customer data, with fines of up to four per cent of global revenue in some cases.

With so much at stake, no organisation can afford to take any chances. The annual Data Protection Day is an ideal time for businesses to drive home the importance of data protection at all levels of the organisation.

We continue to see Password1 as the most common password year after year, and such abysmal security presents an open door to hackers. Likewise, phishing scams over email and phone continue to trick droves of workers into financial or data theft. Even at the highest level of the organisation, security is still seen as a box to be ticked as cheaply as possible rather than an essential operation necessary for survival.

Practices such as regular intensive network testing using real experts rather than occasional automated scans are crucial if businesses are to avoid the reputational and financial fallout of a breach this year.

Lawrence Munro, Director of EMEA and APAC, Trustwave

Image source: Shutterstock/Maksim Kabakou