Document Security & Responding to Rising User-based Data Security Risks

Document Security

Last Updated on June 29, 2024 by Team Experts

The world of data security and document security is continually evolving. But, is your organization’s data security and document security strategy changing as fast as the data threats it faces? Cyber hackers have become highly sophisticated and flexible in their attacks that have made it even more challenging to avoid data breaches. Until recently, cybercriminals and outside threats were of grave danger to any organization; and these have received plenty of press in that regard. However, a recent study revealed that the fastest-growing threat faced by IT security managers is now user-based dangers. Instead of concentrating on how to keep purposeful criminals that reside out of the network at bay, it is now time to start looking at how to keep your documents secure against insider threats.

In spite of significant data risks, employees continue to bring their own devices to work and work remotely without proper guidelines in place, thus putting data at risk and giving security managers less control over how data and documents are accessed and used. To help respond to growing data security threats posed by users, here are some essential tips.

Move the focus of security from control centric to people-centric.

IT security departments are finding it increasingly challenging to hold control over systems and data files that employees use. By concentrating less on restricting the flow of information but more on the rights and responsibilities of the privileged user, data and documents can be more easily secured. By educating employees and users on data and document security, it further becomes their responsibility to maintain the security now that they have the knowledge and have become aware when dealing with the data in their possession. The next step is monitoring and verifying that responsibility by the IT department. Today, even root users and system administrators who have the keys to internal servers and privileged information must be audited and monitored.

Concentrate on data security and not network security. 

Even though server and network security are exceptionally crucial for preventing outside attacks, there must be a greater emphasis on user-based risks to protect confidential documents and other sensitive information shared with them. Given the widespread use of cloud-based services, IT departments are finding it tricky to control the networks and applications that employees are using. However, rather than securing the applications, the actual information used and shared inside or outside the company can be monitored and protected with the help of digital rights management. A document DRM or enterprise rights management solution has robust processes that can stop unauthorized access, control use, and also track how documents are being accessed and used.

Enhance detection capabilities and highlight responsibilities.

The changes in IT departments have made it challenging to adequately protect an organization from data attacks. On the contrary, cyber hackers are finding new ways and inventing new methods to circumvent security protocols that security managers must be aware of. While it can be hard to avoid data breaches, an organization can enhance its ability of detecting and responding to them. Setting up robust systems that monitors its users and alerts you when any suspicious activity is found, can be a proactive method of preventing a data breach from taking place. For instance, a document DRM or enterprise rights management solution gives you complete control on how your information is being viewed when you share it with a privileged user.

Ensure workplace agreements include data security.

Even as an organization addresses user-based security issues, it is imperative that they also include workplace agreements on what staff is expected to do. If the organization is placing added responsibilities on a user to ensure data and document security is met, there must be clarity on the kind of responsible information handling practices carried out by the individual. Even though it may appear obvious, staff must be told what belongs to the company and what belongs to them. They must also be informed on the level of monitoring that will be implemented and its purpose so that they are kept informed. Adding to this information, employees will ensure greater responsibility and alertness on their activities.

Ensure strong security from third-party vendors.

Unfortunately, user-based data and document security threats don’t come from internal staff alone. Over 75% of data breaches have been traced to remote vendor access channels. To safeguard your documents and data, it is crucial to understand whether your third-party contractors and consultants that have access to your data files have reliable document security and data security systems in place. At the end of the day, your sensitive information is only as secure as the security of the user who accesses it. Ensure that you have complete clarity on your vendor’s IT security before providing them access to your data.  Alternatively, you could deploy a document security solution such as DRM or enterprise rights management to control what documents third party vendors can access and how those documents can be used by them.  For example, a document DRM system can prevent documents from being shared with unauthorized users, stop them being viewed in unknown or insecure locations, and prevent them from being printed.  You can also use it to automatically expire documents and/or revoke access at any time.

Also read about: Why Cybersecurity is Important in Your Business’s Digital Marketing


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Anil is an enthusiastic, self-motivated, reliable person who is a Technology evangelist. He's always been fascinated at work especially at innovation that causes benefit to the students, working professionals or the companies. Being unique and thinking Innovative is what he loves the most, supporting his thoughts he will be ahead for any change valuing social responsibility with a reprising innovation. His interest in various fields and the urge to explore, led him to find places to put himself to work and design things than just learning. Follow him on LinkedIn

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