One of the most important parts of running a business involves protecting confidential information. Employee information, management information and business information must all remain secure. If leaked into the wrong hands this information can be used to commit illegal acts including (but not limited to) fraud and discrimination. This in turn, can lead to costly legal battles for businesses and even loss of clients.
With the average cost of data breaches per Australian organisation being more than $2.5 million per year, and rising (Ponemon Institute, 2014), it is imperative that the steps for protecting your business’ confidential information be clear to all invested parties, so what steps are essential here?
- Inform employees – Specifically identify confidential information with your employees and emphasise that the information is, and must remain, confidential. Employment contract and non-disclosure agreements provided to employees are useful here.
- Enforce confidential practices – Make sure your staff uphold confidential practices in their daily work routines; keep confidential documents in lockable filing cabinets (not on desks or in desk drawers in view or reach of others); set up an expectation that no one holds confidential discussions in public areas of the workplace; and clearly mark private documents ‘confidential’, whether they be in a computer file or on hard copy.
- Establish a practice of secure document disposal – When confidential documents are no longer required to be kept by your business, make sure you have systems in place to correctly and securely dispose of them. Secure document disposal by a professional company who provides record destruction, bin supply and pickup services, daily document shredding with guaranteed security (and a certificate of destruction) is essential to helping maintain the confidentiality of these documents.
To sustain a high level of privacy within your workplace and ensure the secure disposal of your business’ confidential documents request an ESHRED service today.