According to industry sources, the average cost of a data breach for a company in a country like Australia is $2.62 million. With the threat of cyber-attacks on the rise, organisations from Government, essential services, health and the private sector are all now on high alert.
The good news is, with the right equipment and knowledge, employees and businesses can help protect sensitive information. We spoke to Andrew Whiting, Technology & IT Consumables Manager at Winc, about the different ways an organisation can protect valuable information from falling into the wrong hands while employees are working in the office, in a co-share environment or at home.
“Shredders are an excellent way to ensure that old or unwanted documents containing sensitive or confidential information are disposed of securely – an important consideration for the home office. Some shredders have extra capability, so in addition to paper, you’re able to shred credit cards, CDs and DVDs,” says Andrew.
Andrew uses the Fellowes Powershred 79Ci Cross-Cut Shredder. “It’s a great product because it has those extra capabilities. It’s also features SafeSense Technology which means it stops the shredding process when hands or other objects are detected. It’s just an extra safety precaution so if you’re working at home, this will protect your kids or pets from getting hurt. I’ve had mine for eight years and it still works a treat.”
There are two common cutting types in shredders – strip-cuts and cross-cuts. “From a security perspective, a cross-cut shredder is better because it cuts things into ribbons, making the pieces really difficult to put together,” says Andrew.
To maintain the shredder, Andrew suggests to “oil your shredder as it will collect dust over time. I’ve been using the Fellowes Powershred Shredder Oil & Lubricant and it’s been great.”
It’s useful to invest in a screen guard to protect what’s on your laptop screen or monitor. When you’re in front of the screen, you have full visibility but if you move to the side or are on an angle, the view will darken.
Use this if you are doing sensitive work that shouldn’t be seen by others. “If you’re working remotely and want to work at the nearby café, in states where restrictions allow this, you won’t always know who has visibility of your screen. Your neighbour could be your competitor. Ultimately, a screen guard will ensure people can’t see over your shoulder,” Andrew says.
If you are working from different places, a portable hard drive can help you store your data safely and Andrew suggests the Verbatim 3.0 Store N Go Secure Hard Drive. “It uses hardware encryption and has a built-in number pad so it’s only accessible if you know the code. There are also portable drives with biometrics that require you to swipe your finger or thumb, like the Verbatim Store n Go Secure Pro USB Drive,” says Andrew.
A simple tip that’s often overlooked is password security. “Don’t use passwords that are easy to guess – birthdays or names of partners or pets. Use a combination of upper case, lower case, symbols and numbers to make it harder to guess,” says Andrew.
“Be careful of where your workspace is being projected, for instance, if you’re sharing an image of your space on a LinkedIn post, or speaking on a webcast. Make sure your passwords or confidential information aren’t visible in your environment,” Andrew tells us.
“In terms of webcam security, our Print and Marketing Services team offers webcam lens covers that you can slide over your webcam camera when it’s not in use. They can even be branded with your company logo for a bit of personalisation.”
For more information about keeping your information safe, speak to our IT specialists or view our range of IT security products.
IBM, (2019), Cost of a Data Breach Report. Available at: https://doi.org/10.1016/S1361-3723(19)30081-8