Most company executives know their company is facing greater security risks than ever before. According to PWC’s 2022 Pulse survey, 78% of executives say cybersecurity is a moderate or serious threat. Yet despite these acknowledgments, plenty of companies are overlooking ways to mitigate foreseeable — and preventable — security gaps.
Take the rise in outsourcing as an example. In an effort to fill open positions in a tight labor market, companies are frequently resorting to using independent contractors (i.e., 1099s). On paper, bringing aboard contract workers sounds practical: they’re not salaried or locked in, after all; when the work is done, the associated cost stops. Plus, they have the bandwidth to complete projects that keep getting put on the back burner by internal teams. However, using contractors often creates multiple security-related risks.
Risk #1: Data Security and Confidentiality Risks
An independent contractor typically needs access to proprietary company data to complete the required work, yet sharing sensitive information or intellectual property with freelancers carries a risk of data breaches or unauthorized disclosure. Since contractors generally work on their own PCs, that opens the door to a multitude of security risks, including leaked information and the introduction of viruses or malware.
It’s important to have non-disclosure agreements (NDAs) in place and implement data security measures to protect your confidential information. That said, even if a contractor signs an NDA, their information storage practices might be alarmingly lacking. Do the PCs/laptops and peripherals they use to incorporate the latest security software to protect your data from bad actors and data backup to prevent the loss of work product?
Risk #2: Communication Challenges
Communication can be a challenge when working with freelancers, especially if they are located in different time zones or have limited availability. Misunderstandings or delays in communication can impact project progress and create frustration.
Additionally, it can be more difficult to control and secure communication channels between contractors than between employees. For example, businesses have little way of monitoring where a contractor’s email might go. And what if the contractor inadvertently sends drafts, projects, or other items to the wrong person? Suddenly, those assets, which may contain exclusive material, could be made public.
Risk #3: Legal and Compliance Issues
The third major risk when dealing with individual freelancers is an inadvertent breach of industry-specific laws and regulations. Many companies, such as those within higher education and healthcare, must abide by strict guidelines and legal requirements. Contractors may not be aware of those guidelines, leaving the company open to penalties, bad press, and even litigation.
Taken together, these issues can make it too risky for organizations to hire contract workers; nevertheless, they don’t have to forgo partnerships altogether. If a company has considered using contractors for content creation, joining forces with a content solutions partner such as Contiem, can allow them to mitigate the risks listed above while achieving the same goals.
Contiem: Designed With Client Security in Mind
Contiem is the world-leading content solutions, software, and services provider. With a team of experts to serve clients who might otherwise turn to individual contractors, Contiem prioritizes superior risk management.
Unlike contractors, Contiem is set up to close any security holes. Below are three strategies that protect Contiem’s international base of small businesses, mid-size companies, and enterprise-level clients.
1. Stay ahead of sector-focused regulatory standards.
One of the hallmarks of Contiem is the company’s treatment of secure, confidential information. Because Contiem works with all types of clientele — including the U.S. Department of Defense — they take intellectual property seriously. Their systems are set up to meet the most stringent security expectations and are routinely audited. This type of attention to detail is rare among freelancers who simply do not have the resources to stay ahead of security issues.
2. Harness a diverse network of skills and expertise.
The Contiem team consists of professionals from numerous backgrounds that cater to a wide range of client needs. From technical writers and eLearning subject matter experts to software engineers and project managers, Contiem promises a five-star talent lineup. This comprehensive lineup guarantees top-notch capabilities and enables Contiem to execute projects seamlessly. By leveraging this diverse skill set, they ensure effective collaboration and streamlined workflows that have been proven to drive cost savings and successful deliverables.
3. Safeguard your content with innovative management solutions.
Contiem recognizes the paramount importance of aligning corporate content toward a unified objective. When information becomes disjointed or leaks out inadvertently, it can create confusion among readers and, in more severe cases, result in the exposure of private data. To address this challenge, Contiem employs state-of-the-art component content management software: RSuite. By leveraging RSuite’s capabilities, they guarantee your information stays protected and your content management practices are efficient and secure.
Mitigating Risk to Excel in Today’s Competitive Landscape
While it may not be feasible to completely eliminate security threats for your business, opting for the services of a reputable firm like Contiem, instead of relying on independent contractors, can significantly mitigate risks. By choosing Contiem, companies address potential vulnerabilities and gain access to world-class assistance, empowering them to compete at the highest level with confidence and peace of mind. By making this strategic decision, businesses can proactively safeguard their interests and enhance their competitive edge.