How to Avoid Becoming the Next Data Breach Headline

A version of this article originally appeared in The Hill. 

As high-profile data breaches continue to make news headlines, expectations concerning the security of data continue to rise. Given the trend surrounding new privacy- and cybersecurity-related laws around the world that mandate personal data breach and security incident notification – including the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and Network and Information Security (NIS) Directive, respectively – it’s now critical for organizations, particularly those with global operations, to maintain a level of compliance that combines productivity and data security.

In the United States, businesses have been required to comply with dozens of state-level personal data breach notification laws for quite some time. As these laws continue to expand and evolve, the ever-changing regulatory landscape makes it difficult for organizations to determine which requirements will ultimately apply to them.

For this reason, it is crucial to adopt a robust programmatic approach to data protection that meets a baseline of best practices at a global level. Organizations that do not keep pace with the ever-evolving data privacy regulatory landscape may very well experience crippling and long-lasting effects, not only to productivity but to overall business reputation, customer retention and revenues.

In order to avoid awkward conversations about data breaches both within your organization and with your customers, prioritize these three considerations to help ensure that data security is maintained and business integrity is protected.

Put your money where your risk is

Investments in data management should not come at the expense of data security. To protect personal data, you must secure it from exfiltration by cybercriminals. Cybersecurity is an essential expenditure that should complement investments in information management processes and technologies, and is the only way to ensure that your organization’s critical applications and data are protected.

In the face of an unfortunate data breach, even with the best detection and remediation technologies at your disposal, it’s still too late. Not only will your organization’s reputation be firmly placed on the front lines, you will most likely lose invaluable time and resources to investigate the incident and mitigate its impact, meet compliance mandates, and develop such assets as breach notification reports.

Instead, strong upfront investment in holistic, preventive security technologies will help keep your organization out of the negative news headlines by reducing the risk of a breach occurring in the first place with better data security and protection.

Visit The Hill for the other two tips on how to avoid becoming the next data breach headline.