Protecting Your Business From Data Breaches
Did you hear about the pharmacy that paid a class action settlement to 800 patients whose identifying information got stolen when the pharmacy suffered a cyber-attack? What about the real estate investing company that paid a class action settlement to more than 1500 investors, property owners, and other business contacts who suffered financial losses because of a data breach of the company’s computers? As a business owner, few experiences are more stressful than getting sued by someone who claims that your negligence caused them to lose money; a class action lawsuit, where hundreds of people, if not more, are blaming their financial losses on you, increases that stress exponentially. If you are not careful enough about protecting the data stored on your company computers, then the thousands of cases of identity theft that happen if your computers get hacked are your legal responsibility. The least you can do to protect yourself, your employees, and your clients from identity theft is to develop a strong cybersecurity strategy. A business law attorney can represent your company in data breach lawsuits or, even better, prevent them by helping you conclude a contract with a cybersecurity company.
How to Protect Your Company’s Data from Cyber-Attacks
Business email compromise scams are on the rise, and if one of your employees falls for one of them, then it is your responsibility if the financial and identifying information stored on your company computers gets breached. Data breaches are a nightmare for business owners and identity theft victims alike. These are some steps that business owners can take to protect their businesses from data breaches:
- Educate your employees about data security. Make sure that they have read the most up-to-date version of the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) cybersecurity checklist and that they follow its recommendations. Hold a meeting or online training every year to inform employees about new developments in workplace data security.
- Engage the services of cybersecurity professionals. Hire a full-time cybersecurity staff if your company has the budget for it. Small businesses can also set up arrangements with cybersecurity professionals on an independent contractor basis.
- Keep work email and personal email separate. Require your employees to use a work email account for all interactions with your company. If you have issued your employees computers, tablets, or cell phones, do not allow them to access their personal accounts from these devices. This way, breaches of employees’ personal email accounts cannot harm other people affiliated with your company.
- Set up two-factor authentication on employees’ work email accounts.
By 2021, everyone knows that it is important to keep your data safe. If you do not keep the data of employees and clients safe, they can clearly point to your negligence if their data gets stolen.
Let Us Help You Today
Even if you operate a fairly low-tech workplace, you are still vulnerable to data breaches, but a Washington DC small business attorney can help you prevent them. Contact Tobin, O’Connor & Ewing for help.