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Privacy and data breaches continue to dominate the headlines of major newspapers as organizations, big and small, fall victim to both malicious crimes and unfortunate mistakes. With a focus on protecting the confidential information of employees, customers and their organization, business leaders no longer consider information security policies and procedures a “should,” but rather a “must.” As new threats to data security emerge, governments consistently revise and develop new regulations to protect personal information. With so much in flux, organizations can struggle to meet information security requirements, especially in tightly-regulated sectors such as healthcare and financial services, where privacy protection requirements are exceptionally stringent.
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While the 2015 Shred-it Information Security Tracker survey found that more organizations are becoming aware of their current obligations and requirements to securely protect their data, it also saw that awareness does not always translate into action.
According to the Security Tracker, 90% of c-suite executives and 79% of small business owners are aware of the legal requirements for storing, keeping or disposing of confidential data in their industry. However, a shocking 37% of small business owners reported having no protocol in place for the secure destruction of confidential information. The gap between large organizations and small businesses was even wider on cybersecurity policies with 85% of c-suites reporting having such policy, while only 35% of small business owners do.
Without the proper information security protocols and policies in place, organizations are not only risking the personal and confidential information of their customers and employees, but increasing their chances of financial loss, reputational damage and legal repercussions. As such, organizations should develop comprehensive policies that are aligned with legislative requirements and aimed at protecting sensitive data in all forms, starting from collection through storage and into destruction.
To get the facts about current security views, risk factors and prevention strategies in this year’s State of the Industry report please visit the Shred-it Resource Center to download the full report.
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