It seems everywhere you go, there’s someone talking about data security. Governments are concerned big tech companies don’t secure people’s data properly. On the flip side, consumers think both big tech and governments need to take data security more seriously. Naturally, the marketing industry can’t bury its head in sand as the world debates data protection.
In this article, we’ll delve more into what data security means and why it’s necessary for the marketing industry.
What is Data Security?
Put simply, data security is the practice of securing important personal, company, or client data from unauthorized access. Unauthorized access could come in the form of malware, ransomware, a brutal force attack, or a phishing scam.
All around the world, governments, and regional regulators have strict laws regarding data protection. Some industries, more so health, communications, and security industries, face legal action if found liable for exposing people’s data.
Why is Data Security in Marketing Important?
Let’s cut the chase. Below is a list of the main reasons every forward-thinking marketing company needs to secure data.
- Preventing Accidental Exposure
A study by Verizon shows 17% of data breaches are not intentional. Surprisingly, the figure is double the 8% of data violations caused by human errors in 2019. In light of that information, marketing companies must be proactive with data protection.
To expound more, companies need to educate their employees on better ways to secure clientele data. What’s more, they must invest in standard security tools like a VPN for Chrome, an antivirus for all devices, and a firewall.
Importantly, companies should understand that data protection is a team effort. Different departments must work together to watch out for potential vulnerabilities and react to breaches accordingly.
- Avoiding Unnecessary Business Expenses
Failure to protect your company’s or clients’ data can lead to data loss. In turn, this could mean loads of cash diverted towards recovering the information, legal fees, fines, and payouts.
Statistically, the average business loses up to $35,000 for every 100 documents compromised. Add the average of $8000 lost every minute a company remains unavailable to its customers and this could add up to a lot of money.
Interestingly, marketing companies can save up to $3 million by avoiding data breaches. Of course, the amount could be less or more depending on the size of a business.
- Thwarting Insider Attacks
Here’s an interesting stat. Six out of ten data breaches around the world succeed with the help of insiders. Many of these attacks succeed because companies are negligent about data protection.
When this negligence extends to company employees, it leads to non-malicious insider attacks. Sometimes employees could also become compromised, say through phishing.
In the worst cases, employees could expose a company’s data for malicious reasons. All the same, marketing companies must create systems to avoid all these sorts of attacks.
- Protects a Company’s Reputation
One of the less talked about effects of data loss is damaging a company’s reputation. You could take years to build a positive reputation for your marketing company.
But once word goes out you lost your clients’ data through negligence or a hack, everyone’s opinion about your company changes. In case you’re wondering, it takes up two years to rebuild a broken image, which might be too long to survive.
You might think your company’s reputation is too strong. But keep this in mind. Forbes studied companies that had experienced data loss in 2019. It found out 46% of the companies had suffered a negative brand image as a result.
- Promoting Data Integrity
Let’s face it. There’s no reason your company should compromise your customers’ data. As we mentioned, most people nowadays expect companies to protect their data accordingly.
Protecting data shows your company has integrity. It shows you’re reliable and trustworthy. Sure, protecting client data is an expense for your business. It’s costly and requires vigilance.
But it’s a cost you need to absorb to maintain a good reputation and to avoid the unnecessary losses we mentioned.
- Promoting Privacy
At its core, data protection is about protecting the privacy of your customers, business partners, employees, and your company. People have a right to privacy and this privacy shouldn’t be compromised by negligence.
To expound more, data privacy shows you respect your clients and business partners. It also promotes freedom of thought. Without privacy, people might not be so willing to participate in your surveys and interviews.
How to Protect your Company’s Data
Protecting your company’s data doesn’t need to be expensive. Below are tips to keep data safe:
The first rule of data protection is encryption. Hackers, phishers, and spies can’t steal any of your company’s data if you encrypt It. Interestingly, you don’t need to have a coder in your programming team to encrypt information. Anyone can encrypt data with the help of free and premium tools like VPNs and SSL certificates.
The second rule of data encryption is to backup everything. Backing up company information ensures you can retrieve it without bowing to the whims of hackers. It also ensures you can recover all compromised data.
- Store Data in the Cloud
There’s a reason more and more companies are switching from hard drives to the cloud for data storage. You can store as much data as you have. And there are plenty of security tools to keep the information safe.
- Practice Standard Security Measures
Cybercriminals target negligent companies. If you have a fortress of security measures in your company, you’re probably not the ideal target for attackers. To expound more, you need to use firewalls, antivirus programs, two-factor authentication, antimalware programs, and other tools.
- Password Protection
Although two-factor authentication can protect you from password loss, you need to secure all of your company’s accounts. Use strong passwords and password management programs to avoid forgetting the passwords.
Data security isn’t just a concern for governments and big tech companies. Your marketing business needs to invest in data protection. Not only can it save you money, but also enhances your brand image and prevents unnecessary losses.
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