Every organization should have a data loss prevention (DLP) policy for preventing data from being improperly deleted or accessed. The main goal should be to protect valuable or sensitive information, some common examples of this are medical records, financial information PII, and any other information that is important from a business, data privacy, or regulatory perspective. Here are 7 key tips on how you can effectively implement a DLP plan:
1) Identify and Classify important information
The first step to a DLP plan is to ensure that you identify and classify all of the important information in the company. You need to know what the information is, who needs to have access to it, and where it is being stored. If you don’t have this information it will be impossible to come up with a plan to protect it from unauthorized access.
2) Access Control Lists (ACLs)
An ACL is a list of who can access a certain resource, they serve to keep people from within the company from accessing information that they don’t have a business need for. You should configure ACLs for all important company information and limit it only to the people that have a business need for it.
3) Data Encryption
Using encryption throughout the company will help to prevent people that shouldn’t have access to the information from being able to read it. If a computer hard drive is stolen or communication is being listened to by a third party, encryption will keep that information readable by the outside parties.
4) System Hardening
Every system that has sensitive information should be hardened. System Hardening is simply the process of configuring a machine to be as secure as possible without impeding business operations. This is important for making every system as secure as possible and it should be done based on information held on that system.
5) System Patching
To prevent people from potentially being able to hack into your systems, one of the simplest things you can do is ensure all of your systems are properly patched. This will reduce the vulnerabilities that you have exposed and improve the overall security you have.
6) Anomaly Detection
Some software solutions can scan your network for unusual behavior and flag them as potential threats for a data leak. One example would be for the software to scan the names of files and flag anything that appears to match things like credit card numbers, social security numbers, etc.
7) Get rid of unnecessary data
You should only store information that is necessary for business purposes. You should make sure not to collect any extra information and to get rid of any information that is no longer needed for business. This way you decrease the potential for a data leak by limiting what you have that can be exposed.
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