A Major Information Security Risk is Neglected by U.S. Businesses

We look at digital security so much, we don’t look at the confidential and personally recognizable information on our paper documents.

A recent survey with a migration towards paperless offices, American businesses are not concentrating on the managing of confidential information in all forms.

Even with the development of a mobile and progressively digital workforce, paper documents remain to be a central component of office life. Based on the Security Tracker 2017 survey, over 35% of senior executives expect an increase in the amount of paper their companies will use throughout the next year and over 50% percent of small business owners expect the amount of paper to remain the same. Regardless of this, small business owners show a lack of knowledge of the susceptibilities a dawdling paper trail can generate within their companies.

A top executive at a well-known document shredding service company states that regardless if it is paper documents or electronic devices, correctly disposing of or safeguarding sensitive information is the most accurate way for a business to safeguard their reputation, their employees, and their customers. All businesses need to begin taking proactive steps to guarantee their employees are skilled in destruction procedures, that sensitive information is stored safely, and that they’re alleviating information security risks by getting rid of paper and electronic devices in a timely manner.

The Security Tracker survey also showed that more than 25% of small business owners think that the loss or theft of documents would bring no harm to their company and over 30% believe a data breach wouldn’t really impact their company. Their actions show a lack of concern: more than 35% of small business owners have no policy in place for disposing and storing confidential paper documents and just under 45% shred their documents (confidential and non-confidential). In addition, only a little over 12% utilize a professional shredding service to destroy confidential papers.

Most large American businesses have put in place policies that address confidential data. Nonetheless, their practices consistently leave the door open for fraud, particularly when it comes to destroying and storing hard drives and electronic devices.

These security shortfalls have shown the way to an absence of confidence in all American businesses. Trust in the present-day secure destruction systems for both paper and electronic documents and media is low. Additional factors causing low confidence include an absence of employee knowledge of the legal obligations in their industry or a lack of schooling on the company’s policies for storing and destroying all confidential and non-confidential papers and information. The truth is only about half of all senior executives school their employees on legal requirements at least two times a year and about 35% of small business owners don’t train their employees at all.

RedWave Technology Group, LLC offers data backup services to businesses in the Birmingham area.  Give us a call at (205) 917-5757 or email us at info@redwaveit.com