Protecting Your Corporate AssetsBy Bob Violino Print
The damage from suffering a data breach can be significant and widespread: lost revenue, diminished customer confidence, bad publicity and damage to the brand.
Providing Business Benefits
While security is often viewed as a necessary expense, it actually can provide business benefits. When a company implements strong security measures, it sends a message to business associates that the company values its clients and their data, says Joyce Sigler, vice president, administration at Jones & Wenner Insurance Agency in Fairlawn, Ohio.
"Beyond those benefits, you sleep better at night knowing that you are doing what is prudently the best you can do, and that you have an eye on the value of your business and the business of your clients," he explains.
Jones & Wenner is especially protective of the personal data of its active customers, agency prospects and past agency clients.
"Years ago, you never thought that more than a lock and key were necessary to protect agency and customer data because it was on site within the confines of your office," Sigler says. "Today, with a majority of data transactions done electronically, the game has changed. Every aspect of a client's information is at risk and needs protection, particularly [information] that would allow a perpetrator to duplicate an insured."
The company uses encryption, firewalls, password protection and user authentication to safeguard data. One technology it has deployed is software from AppRiver that enables Jones & Wenner to protect its customers with layers of security. "We rely on AppRiver for spam filtering, encrypted email, email continuity and Web filtering," Sigler says.
In addition, the agency stores as little as possible internally on its physical equipment. "Agency desktops are wiped free every night of any items that are downloaded by users during the day and restored to the agency standards," Sigler says. "This ensures that integrity of our internal standards and [settings are] in place."
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