Why data security is a must today and what you should know about it

December 6, 2021
Guides
Team Streamoid

If you are willing to secure your sensitive data in this jungle of information technology, you must rely on data security. Data security in cloud computing is a series of steps and strategies to help users save or protect critical information. Essentially, data security involves a set of applications, strategies, practices, controls, etc., to safeguard sensitive data.  

A concept encompassing every aspect of information security, starting from the physical security of hardware and administrative to access controls and storage devices. It also includes the logical security of software applications, organizational procedures and policies.  

Given a steady implementation, without doubt, robust data security strategies will shield an organization’s sensitive assets against cybercriminals and hackers. They also secure the same from unexpected human errors and insider threats. These two issues continue to top the causes of data breaches.

Data security could improve further if it involves securing your information based on behavioural changes. However, data security is not a silver bullet that will ensure that there will be no data threats, attacks, or breaches, but a way of minimizing these. So, to sum up, data security definition can be a concoction of various steps and practices to reduce data threats and attacks.  

Streamoid has a plethora of data security practices that will help you save your data from any situation. All the data security solutions are easy to integrate and use. There are other reasons you should check these solutions, but before that, let's explore more about data security.

Why is Data Security important?

We are all aware of the importance of our data. However, to answer this rhetorical question, we have to consider several aspects. The first reason is the moral and legal commitments of the organizations to protect and secure user data from falling into any third party.  

For example, a bank will want to protect your data from being stolen as it contains information related to your finances, your personal information, and other stuff. If it falls into the wrong hands, the result could be catastrophic.  

With each passing day, digital transformation continues to alter the aspects of business operations. Considering the sheer volume of ever-growing data created, manipulated and stored by enterprises, it is a necessity that data be governed.  

Moreover, computing environments are more complex when compared to earlier times - routinely spanning the enterprise data center, public cloud and several edge devices (the edge devices range from remote servers to the Internet of Things (IoT) sensors and robots.) Such complex environments create an expanded surface that is challenging to secure, aka, prone to cyberattacks.  

There is always a risk of data security breaches in every organization. These data hacks or breaches can damage your brand name in the eyes of the public, which will affect your organization immensely.  

Brand image, customer loyalty, and financial instability might hit you if a data breach or hack occurs at your firm. Facebook's Data Breach of 2018 is an excellent example of a data security breach. This is one of the prime factors which also enlightened many about data security.  

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Main elements of data security

The three elements of data security that are meant to be adhered to by every organization are Availability, Confidentiality, and Integrity. They are also called CIA TRIAD. The primary purpose served by them is a framework and security model for a top-notch data security company.  

Let's understand better what each core element contributes towards keeping one's valuable data protected against any unauthorized access and exfiltration of sensitive data.  

  • Confidentiality: It ensures that only an authorized user possessing required authentication credentials can access the data.
  • Integrity: The second core element of data security ensures the stored data has not been tampered with in any possible way. From its reliability to accuracy, everything remains intact with no unwarranted change.
  • Availability: The last holding pillar of data security is availability which ensures that data is readily available as per the need of ongoing business.

Types of data security
You can secure your data in more than one way. Some of these ways are mentioned below,

Access Controls
Granting uncontrolled full access at all times is something never appreciated. Hackers tend to reach out for any existing loopholes, and full access always grabs their attention. Thus, to ensure anything like this never takes place, there must be a limit to digital and physical access to valuable and critical data.  You can achieve good results by checking log-in entry and bypassing a mandate that blocks any unauthorized log-in attempts.

Authentication
Authentication refers to accurately identifying a user before granting it any access to sensitive data. Authentication comes with its own set of PINs, Passwords, Security Tokens, and nowadays much widely used biometrics so that entry is granted only to authorized personnel.

Backups & Recovery
What every successful firm has in its business model is a backup plan which is carefully designed to activate in case of failures. Similarly, good data security has room for any data breach, system failure, data corruption, or a malicious server attack. Apart from protecting data, it also stores data in flash drives, local networks, or the cloud.

Data Erasure
Data erasure is an advanced step in terms of security. Earlier, while performing data formatting with tools like data recovery, it was possible to recover the entire data. To avoid any data leak, data erasure software overwrites the data and ensures that data won't fall in the wrong hands.

Data Masking
Masking is a technique actively used by data security firms where data is hidden under obscuring letters and numbers with a proxy layer on top of it. So next time, even if data lands in the wrong hand, they won't be able to access it without decrypting the tool.

Data Resiliency
Data Resiliency ensures that data will assume no damage even in the case of a power outage and natural disasters. Thus, data resiliency is designed so that the system can endure and recover from failures.

Encryption
A level-up way to mask your data is encryption. It's a computer algorithm programmed to convert data characters into unreadable formats via an encryption key. Each key is unique to each encryption it performs. So, with the encryption in force, any unauthorized person without the keys would never be able to decrypt the message.

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Latest data security technologies

Data security is necessary as it protects users' digital information from unauthorized sites or cyber-attacks, or theft throughout the period. Various norms maintain user privacy and properly govern the data. Various technologies that protect data from breaching and reduce the risk are:

Real-time alerts
Most data breaches occur via clients, contractors, or third-party dealers. This problem can be solved quickly by utilizing real-time systems and data monitoring technology. So, you will now receive real-time alerts in case of any data breach or attack. This assists by reducing the loss of personal data to unauthorized sites.

Data auditing
Data auditing helps to analyze and pinpoint errors in your data security system. Data auditing software is helpful as it keeps records and reports on several activities like access to sensitive information and the file path used. This is an important step that prevents data breaches and avoids unauthorized transitions.  

Risk management
This will help your firm to identify the most critical and sensitive data. Comprehensive data risk management will provide valid points to identify the severe security threats and rectify them to avoid fatalities.The procedure begins by recognizing sensitive data accessed by people or stale data or data with permissions. Data risk management will give some time and will rectify the issues.

Filtering stale data
You must eliminate old, needless data. By using systems that can detect old and unnecessary files and archive them, the process will speed up. With acquisitions, reorganization or relocation, there must be an extensive network with many unidentified servers in this time duration. So, one needs to purge out stale data.

Data minimization
Conventionally firms had the notion that having or owning more data would be beneficial. And that after some time, it will be of great use. At present, a large quantity of data is viewed as a liability from the perspective of security. The more data a firm has, the more hackers it invites. This is the reason why data minimization practices should be adopted.  

Best practices to ensure data security

There is no perfect solution that will guarantee complete data security. This means that there are a series of steps, practices, strategies, and other aspects that, when combined, will reduce the risks to a bare minimum. Some of the best practices that will ensure that your data is safe from exposure, loss, or breaches are given below,

  • Behaviour-based permission:
    Granting permission for accessing data to a huge set of people means that the data is at risk. Even if the individuals have temporary access or permissions to the data, your data becomes vulnerable to attacks.  You can limit over-permissive behaviour by tracking down the user profiles via software that assesses the user behaviour. An Entitlement review will help you ensure that only the right people can check or access your organization's data.
  • Deletion of unused or redundant data
    Having unused or redundant data stored in your organization works as a banquet for hackers. Obsolete data might not be necessary for your organization, but it can do more harm than good in the hands of hackers. A pile of unnecessary classified information should be eliminated from your system, ensuring that those remain unrecoverable.
  • Isolation of data-sensitive files
    Having your files containing sensitive data at a shareable or open drive location means you are inviting data hacks or breaches. The best way to counter these attacks is by keeping these files in an isolated location. You can segregate your classified files and secure them at an isolated and safe location using data security software.
  • Regular security checks
    If you desire impeccable data security for your firm, you must consider all the present and future data threats. This also means that you must secure your data from external as well as internal threats. Therefore, having regular security checks in your data security policy is a must. Moreover, software that delivers real-time alerts and monitors your data can be helpful.

Summary
If you are thinking of having data security as a one-shot project, then please reconsider. Data security works round the clock and is a company-wide practice. With piles of critical information being available online, you must safeguard it from data threats. With inadequate data security practices, you are putting your firm and yourself at moral and legal risks. At Streamoid, we take data security very seriously and are GDPR compliant.

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