Tips for Being a Data Privacy Champion

Keep Personal Data Private

Cybersecurity and data privacy can seem daunting. Attackers continue to refine their tactics and the list of things you need to consider to keep your data safe is ever-expanding. This Data Privacy Day, here are some tips to make you a data privacy champion.

  1. Gone Phishing

    Phishing is an attacker’s greatest weapon when it comes to dropping off malware. As our tech improves, so do theirs. Take time to review all incoming emails, and look for some telltale signs like spelling or grammar mistakes, a lack of personal salutation, a long address or URL, and misrepresented logos. More sophisticated phishing attempts will look completely legitimate but will ask you to share something personal, make a purchase or take another action that puts private data at risk. When in doubt, have someone from IT check out the email or contact the sender to verify the request was from them (don’t just hit “Reply”).

  2. Into the Breach

    Breaches don’t always play out the way you might think. Lots of shows and films have a nefarious attacker “breaching” our hero’s PC with an ominous claim of “I’m in!” But most breaches aren’t malicious at all and only happen because of negligence or human error. Prevent this by being aware of your surroundings, your office and your practices at work. Keep business meetings in private or secure places, stay knowledgeable about software updates and security protocols, and make sure all your devices are locked and password- or pin-protected.

  3. Let’s NOT Get Physical

    Avoid using or keeping physical reminders on your person or at your desk. Physical reminders can be anything like a pin, a password or payment information for a client. Instead, opt for a password management app to help you manage your passwords, and enable multifactor authentication which requires an additional action to verify one’s identity before being able to log in and access account info.

  4. Keeping Confidence

    Restrict access to confidential data on a need-to-know basis and choose who gets to see what data. Many tools have settings that allow you to determine access rights. Keep people off of email threads until you know they need to access project information. If you print anything, make sure it’s locked in a drawer or cabinet so it isn’t sitting out in the open. When it comes to digital private data, remember that passwords, encryption and administrative restrictions are your friends.

  5. Have a Plan

    What do you do when there is a breach? Who do you contact first? Be aware of your organization’s policies, and have a plan in case your personal data is compromised. In the time it takes to detect and respond, a lot of damage or loss can occur, so stay sharp!

These five tips can help you be a data privacy champion this January 28 and throughout the year!

Learn how the Alterity Cybersecurity Awareness Program, an array of imaginative and engaging communication, education and reinforcement tools, can help create and sustain a culture of security in your organization.