With the high volume of data currently handled by most companies, making sure this information is safe is one of the biggest challenges in modern organizations. Whether it is clients’, partners’ or employee’s data, a great deal of investment in security is mandatory.
Here you will understand more of what information security stands for, what are the pillars that you must take into consideration when designing security action plans and some of the consequences of not implementing it. Check it out!
What is information security?
Information security aims to preserve data and ensure it is only accessed, modified or shared by authorized people, in an organized and registered manner. This methodology approaches a series of measures (processes, methods, and policies) to guarantee the integrity, confidentiality and availability of companies’ or individuals’ data.
Information security is not only about technological systems and devices, but also about any asset whit the potential to retain data. Here are some common companies’ assets that you should consider:
Documents: This is usually more common in financing, where the leakage of important documents such as bills, and invoices could compromise the availability and secrecy of data.
People: the employees of a company have access to information that need to observe criteria already mentioned, especially confidentiality. What many companies use is the confidentiality terms agreement, where the employee agrees not to reveal any information to third parties.
Physical Spaces: some physical spaces are as important to information security as any other digital file. Spaces used to share confidential information should also meet the confidentiality, integrity, and availability criteria.
As you can perceive, security is not restricted to technology, as people inside organizations also have the power to decide how they will use the information they access. Something as simple as a private e-mail cannot escape the protective organizational environment.
Why is information security important for your business?
Information security is not only a strategic matter inside organizations: it is a fundamental piece in the entire business network. And currently, more than ever, information is power.
A reflex is the expanded and increasing use of big data in organizations, commonly portrayed as a competitive advantage. However, it is worth to mention that technology will only play its part if the data is available and righteous.
In this context where data have such an important role, cybercriminals try to take advantage of security breaches and fragility of companies’ protection systems to steal or kidnap information. Learn more about cybersecurity here.
What are the three pillars of information security?
1st: confidentiality, integrity, and availability
Is the insurance that information can be accessed and released only by its owner or authorized personnel.
Is the precision and non-violation of data during its life cycle, avoiding modification by non-authorized users in a non-registered manner. Essentially, is about keeping the data intact through all its interactions.
Data should be available only if needed, decreasing the changes of a security problem. To do this, systems that should keep these data stored and secured should be working perfectly.
2nd: Prevention, detection, and reaction
Is about adopting environmental protection measures such as systems, servers, programs or any other that offers remote access to sensitive information.
Detection complements prevention, as it involves continuous monitoring to identify attacks, leakages, and other issues as quick as possible.
What should be the reaction of the company when prevention and detection fail? Reaction needs to be focused on stopping the attack and reducing possible damages caused by it.
3rd: Technology, processes, and people
The third information security pillar is the foundation to the best practices and previously mentioned goals.
Consists of the tools (hardware and software) that allow that prevention, detection, and reactions on the systems. It includes antivirus, firewalls, and other more advanced applications.
Security information is only possible through well-defined processes, capable of providing the maximum efficiency to the measures of the second pillar. In this aspect, you should pay attention to the documentation and procedures that will result in coordinated actions to protect the organization.
This is the most important component of the third pillar, as they are the technology operators that define processes and turn information security into something possible, applicable, and scalable.
What are the most common mistakes in information security?
Lack of investment
As we have seen, not investing in information security may have severe consequences to companies, finally resulting in financial and reputational losses within the market. Thanks to its big consequences, it is important that security is presented to managers as a top priority and strategic investment, capable of generating long-term benefits for the company.
Lack of policies
Information security is not only about technological processes, like hardware and software enhancement. For it to be successful, an organization needs to have clear security policies, that help prevent and avoid problems. These politics must penetrate through the entire company, involving all employees and insuring each one of them understands their responsibility inside this process.
What are the consequences of not having Information Security?
As we have seen, the impacts of not investing in information security may be catastrophic in different levels. An attack could for example result in the unfeasibility of access to data or the corruption of this information, paralyzing services and resulting in irreparable financial and organizational losses.
In fact, few minutes of instability may cause important damage.
Leakages, frauds, passwords stealing, among other crimes, generate instability also from the market point of view. Trust from partners, clients and investors decreases, and the company will have a long way ahead to regain the reputation lost.
Other important consequences are the juridical processes that may result from the information leakage and exposure of clients’ and partners’ data since it is companies’ responsibility to keep it safe.
To understand where your organization stands and the best options to increase cybersecurity in your company, talk to us today!