Why Data Encryption is Important For Your Business

Data encryption is the process of translating data into another form, or a code. It is only accessible to people with specific access to a secret key (formally called a decryption key) or password. Encrypted data is referred to as ciphertext and unencrypted data is termed as plaintext. Currently, encryption is the most popular and effective data security method used by organizations of all sizes. There are 2 main types of data encryption:

Symmetric Key Cipher: This is known as a secret key algorithm where there is a singular method of decoding the message that must be sent to the receiver before the message can be decoded. There will be a common key that will be used to encode and decode which is best suitable for individual users and closed systems.

Asymmetric Cryptography: This method uses two different keys (a public and a private key) that are interlinked together mathematically. The keys are large numbers that have been paired and synced with each other. They are not the same number, hence the term is known as asymmetric. You can share the public key with anyone, but the private key must remain confidential. Both can be used to encrypt a message, but the opposite key is used to encrypt and decode that message.

Why is data encryption important?

The main objective of data encryption is to protect and secure confidential digital data as it is stored on computer systems and seamlessly transmitted using the internet or other computer networks. Data privacy is very important especially if it’s going to be transmitted through the internet. The old form of data encryption standard (DES) has been replaced by modern encryption algorithms that play a critical role in the security of IT systems and communications.

These algorithms ensure confidentiality and drive key security initiatives like authentication, integrity, and non-repudiation. Authentication allows for the verification of a message’s origin and integrity provides proof that a message’s contents have not changed since it was sent.

Apart from protecting sensitive data from being stolen or compromised, data encryption also helps prove that the information is authentic and comes from the point of origin it claims to come from. It can also be used to verify the actual origin of a message and confirm that it hasn’t been altered during transmission.

In general, there are two distinct ways to you use data encryption:

1. Encrypting when it is “in transit” means you send your data somewhere else via the web, email, or anywhere other than just on your own device. When you encrypt data in transit, you are effectively using encryption to try to deter people from listening in on your conversations. The most common form of this encryption type is web traffic. A lot of websites, specifically financial, social media, and email websites now use this by default. Malware and viruses are kryptonite to any computer and/or website and they should be dealt with before you actually get one.

2. Encrypting when it is “at rest” means when it is stored on your device, which could be an integral part of the device, like a hard drive, removable drive, or a thumb drive. All of the major operating systems and familiar software applications provide the option to encrypt files and folders on your device. When you leverage this option, you must make use of a password that allows you to unlock and decrypt those files.

What are the risks for data encryption?

The speedy increase in encrypted traffic is altering the security landscape drastically. About 85% of CIO’s believe that their security defenses are less effective since they were unable to inspect the encrypted network traffic for attacks. Around 90% of the CIOs have or expect to suffer from a viable breach in which encrypted traffic is used to hide the attack. Encryption technology could be a helpful tool to keep out unwanted attacks but there is a possibility it could be a curse too.

In a nutshell, it is essential for the businesses to aggressively inspect the two security risks – tangible threats that include malware, and threat indicators such as signs that a malicious/risky party is scanning the network for vulnerabilities. Data security experts need to check encrypted traffic from all aspects of their business and audit the information from every session to understand the full ‘transaction’ of a particular piece of traffic.

Reasons why encrypting your data is crucial

Information / Data is the most valuable asset you own, and business owners should be aggressive when it comes to protecting it. Here are some reasons why you should encrypt your data:

1. Your customer’s contact information can be used to redirect payments to a different bank account

2. A good hacker can place orders for goods which your company is liable to pay for by making use of your supplier account details

3. An unused, locked, or ost or stolen mobile device containing sensitive information can be easily stolen through information like cached domain passwords, stored Wi-Fi passwords, and passwords saved in web browsers

Healthcare is a great example as they have taken serious measures to ensure that all patient data is secure. HIPAA plays an important role in healthcare and others should follow their lead in trying to secure their data.

What is the cost of data encryption?

Most organizations will never put a financial price on the protection of their data and that of your customers. The inability to protect data can destroy a company’s reputation and no one wants to work with an organization that may allow sensitive information to fall into the wrong hands. Experienced data security experts like SDI however, can easily help you out with encryption options that will suit your organization’s needs.

The cost depends on the company size and the level of encryption needed. Good companies can make a more cost-effective solution based on your needs all while still protecting your data from threats.

Whether it’s protecting your email communications, stored data, some type of encryption should be included in your lineup of security tools. While data encryption may seem like a daunting, complicated process, it is necessary and there are experts to help you.

The importance of data security and HIPAA compliance

What is data security?

Data security is the process of protecting all data from any breaches, corruption, and any other unauthorized access. It can include the use of data encryption, data masking, data erasure, and data backups to help keep the data secure.

Digital technology is an integral part of our everyday life. All businesses in this digital era deal with some kind of data. Starting from banking giants dealing with substantial volumes of personal as well as financial data to the individual businesses storing the contact details of their customers, data plays a very significant role.

Apart from the multiple advantages of digitalization, cyber attacks and threats are very real, which means, serious efforts need to be taken to secure all data. The objective of data security is to protect the data that an organization or business collects, stores, creates, receives and transmits. Irrespective of the device, technology or process that is used to manage the data collected, it must be protected.

Data security is also essential for any business, irrespective of its size and their operations because businesses mostly rely on data storage and transactions to accomplish their business objectives. The usage of digital data and technologies like AI has changed the world and increased business profitability and efficiency. However, with that comes more security risks that could devastate a company. The priority of shielding data from security threats is more important today than it has ever been.

Why is data security Important?

Data security is crucial for most of the companies and businesses since the entire business operations revolve around this cycle. Critical information like client details, bank details, account details, personal files, etc. has to be well protected because if it gets into the wrong hands, it can be misused easily. Such information is hard to replace and potentially dangerous. By securing such data or information, one can protect the files and avoid facing any difficulties. Even something like a simple website should be protected correctly from malware and viruses.

Your reputation may be affected – You work very hard with an objective to establish a trustworthy business brand, but when a data breach occurs, that reputation that you have built may be affected. This is because your business also has confidential information of customers and clients, and once data is lost, so is the trust. You may find it difficult to retain current clients and onboard new ones.

Threats are on the rise – The most important reason why data security is important is because of the increasing threats and cyber crimes. Without securing your data, you cannot expect to run a business or even go on as a home PC user. This is because of the emergence of multiple mobile devices, internet, and cloud computing, etc. Every device and system is vulnerable no matter how big or small.

It’s expensive and complicated to fix – Businesses could recover from the dent in the reputation but rebounding from the technical aspects of data breaches can be tough and potentially dangerous. It is highly difficult to fix such problems without spending a great deal of time and money.

How can my business secure data?

Securing the stored data involves preventing unauthorized individuals from accessing it. Data security is also about preventing accidental or intentional destruction, infection or corruption of information.

Here are some ways to secure your data:

Data Encryption – Data encryption isn’t just for technology geeks since modern tools have made it possible for anyone to encrypt emails and other information. Converting the data into a code that cannot be easily read without a key that unlocks it.

Data Masking – Data masking is actually a method of formulating a structurally similar but inauthentic version of an organization’s data that can be used for purposes such as software testing and user training. The purpose is to protect the actual data while having a functional substitute for occasions when the real data is not required.

Data Erasure – The process of this data security measure is aimed at ensuring that data which is no longer being used be completely removed. It is removed in a way that the data can no longer be recovered especially by unauthorized people.

Data Backup – One of the most common and basic, yet often overlooked, data security process is backing up your data. Basically, this creates a duplicate copy of the data you have so that if a device is lost, stolen, or compromised, you never lose your important information. It’s advisable to create a backup on a different device, such as an external hard drive, so that you can easily recover your information when the original device becomes corrupted.

Augmenting HIPAA Technical Safeguards for Increased Data Security One business that has taken serious steps with regards to data security is healthcare. Network and data security breaches are awful concerns that could affect the goodwill of any organization. It becomes very serious for healthcare organizations when they are exposed to these threats. Recent cases of ransomware attacks show that healthcare organizations must create comprehensive data security measures.

What is HIPAA?

HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act) is a holistic approach to healthcare security and aimed at improving the efficiency and effectiveness of the healthcare data management and security system. Over time, several rules were added to HIPAA focusing on the protection of sensitive data. HIPAA is designed to be flexible and comprehensive to cover the variety of uses and disclosures of data which has created a great change in the way the processes have been handled over time. In a nutshell, HIPAA does the following:

-Offers the ability to transfer and continue health insurance coverage for millions of American workers and their families when they change or lose their jobs.

-Decreases health care fraud and abuse; Helps in abiding to industry-wide standards for health care information on electronic billing and other processes.

-Ensures the protection and confidential handling of protected health information.

Additionally, HIPAA compliance can help and assist entities in responding to potential attacks, and working to recover from such incidents.

Healthcare is just one example of a business that has made serious strides in making sure their patient’s data is not only protected but also prepared in the case that a security breach does happen. Most of the businesses overestimate their ability to handle data loss when a breach occurs. For instance, companies believe that they are well prepared to overcome these threats, but they forget that the majority of data breaches do not occur the way they might think.

If you want to learn more about what you might need in terms of a data security system, contact a company like SDI who can provide complete data protection for your business and maintain it over time. Contact us today and find out how we can keep your data safe from day one at: +1.408.802.2885 / +1.408.621.8481 or email team@sdi.la.