The world is a crazy place these days and it seems that more and more companies are falling victim to cybercrime. Even if they have their customers’ best intentions at heart, companies can still fall victim to data breaches which means their customers fall victim to identity theft. These days, it’s estimated that about one in 15 people is a victim of identity theft and in 2017 that number was as high as 16.7 million.
With that in mind, it’s imperative that companies do all can do these days to protect customers information and by using the following steps companies can do a lot to make that happen:
- Limit access: Whether your company is big or small, there’s a good chance that not everybody in the company needs to see sensitive information, especially if it concerns your customers. The reasoning behind this is simple really: the fewer people that have access to sensitive information, the fewer opportunities there are for hackers to find a weak point in your company and exploit it.
- Focus on what’s essential: These days companies can basically collect whatever information they need from customer provided the customer is willing to give it to them. But just because there’s so much information that’s readily available, it doesn’t mean your company needs to use all of it. By focusing on only what they really need, companies can save a lot of energy and resources. It also doesn’t hurt to make your customers feel more comfortable. You collect only what you need and give your customers peace of mind that they’re not giving away every bit of information they have to you.
- Destroy data: You may not know this, but it’s actually required by law to destroy sensitive information after you’ve used it. One of the easiest ways to do this is by using secure paper shredders. High capacity paper shredders and high security paper shredders allow companies to go through high volumes of sensitive documents very quickly and very easily. With secure paper shredders, companies give customers another reason to feel peace of mind since the customer knows that once the company is done with the information it will be destroyed in a proper manner. Secure paper shredders allow you to maintain that high level of trust that’s so important to doing everyday business.
- Focus on customer privacy: You can never be too careful when it comes to customer security and because of that it’s far too critical of topic to leave in the hands of just a few people in your organization. That doesn’t mean everybody needs to see sensitive information, but it does mean everybody in your organization should understand the importance of customer privacy and whatever company policies you put in place regarding that. That also extends to internal privacy as well and how it relates to personal property in company equipment.
- Make the customer comfortable: It can’t be stressed enough just how important customer privacy is especially when they’re giving you things like their home address or their social security number. Your company needs to do everything possible to let the customer know that their information is safe and the methods of information collection that you’re doing are very safe. Be upfront with them about what you’re doing and why you’re doing it, allow them to ask questions and basically guide them through the information collection process.
- Study: These days you can never know too much information, especially when it comes to protecting customer data. That means staying up on encryption processes and technologies that are constantly evolving. Failure to keep up-to-date on encryption practices and Technologies leaves your company vulnerable to attacks and that’s the last thing you want. Companies need to know all they can about how to protect themselves and how to protect their customers.
By using tools like secure paper shredders, collecting only necessary information, limiting access and keeping yourself up to date on changes in technology, your company can better protect its own data and its customers data from breaches and theft. This will strengthen your trust with your customers and keep your business focused on doing what it does best.