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How can data security be affected by employee communications?

Internal communication can have a huge impact on pretty much everything from employee happiness to client satisfaction. So, it’s obvious that internal communications play a significant role in your company.

To encourage and facilitate open employee communication, companies often use different communication channels and tools. Tablets, laptops, smartphones, e-mail accounts, all of these tools and tools you access online make doing business and getting and exchanging information much easier. 

But, unfortunately, this information can be accessed by anyone outside your company as well. And if the confidential company information gets in the wrong hands, the outcome can be really bad for the company.

Recently, many questions have been raised about how well companies distinguish between consumer and private messaging tools and how secure their internal communications are. This leads us to believe that many are still not aware of how employee communication can seriously affect the data security of your company. 

Here are some examples of how can data security be affected by employee communications.

Unsecured networks

Regardless of whether employees are remote or working from brick-and-mortar offices, businesses should find a way to protect information and data. Information should be secured at all times and every network, employee, and device used to access this information should also be secured. Nowadays, unsecured networks are some of the leading causes of data breaches. Employees often, without thinking, access the company’s corporate accounts and send sensitive e-mails by using an open Wi-Fi network. 

The unsecured networks leave the door open for many different types of cyber attacks from malware distribution to much more dangerous information and data theft. This is only one reason why securing internal communications is crucial.

Employee negligence

  1. Human error, unfortunately, is still one of the main reasons why data breaches occur. Employees are still very much unaware of the importance of keeping encrypted channels and sensitive information safe. The safety of your internal communications is much more at risk of human error than hackers.

Loss of devices, documents, misdelivery, and other similar human-related mistakes allow hackers and attackers to access sensitive information. 

  1. Communication issues

Employee communication issues are also some of the reasons why data breaches happen. Hackers and cybercriminals capitalize on the vulnerabilities and mistakes they come across. 

Incorrectly configured firewalls, lack of proper system patches, insufficient training, and similar issues leave your company exposed to different types of attacks.

Misuse of consumer-focused communication tools

Consumer-focused communication tools such as WhatsApp, Viber, and so on are not fit to be used for business due to a large number of privacy issues. Companies should use business-focused internal communication platforms that provide security and where you can share confidential information with minimal risk.

Thankfully, companies have many options when it comes to business-focused internal communication platforms so they don’t have to resort to consumer-focused tools. Some of the examples include intranet, mobile intranet apps, internal newsletters, different collaboration tools and instant messaging tools, community channels, and leadership blogs, to name a few.

Theft

Regardless of how small or big, your business is, personal data is always vulnerable when you’re online. Thieves aren’t picky, if your client records are worth something, you can be targeted and your information will be stolen and sold on a black market.

Thieves will find many ways to obtain information if it’s worth something. And your company doesn’t have to be huge, if you’re an easy target, they will attack.

How to secure internal communication channels?

Companies need to be aware of the risks of using ever-changing technology. They need to work on finding solid cybersecurity strategies to protect their data, employees, and clients. It’s also necessary to educate employees on how to safely use technology and internal communication channels. 

  1. Use safe internal communication platforms

As already mentioned, the best would be to transfer your internal communications to a more secure business communication platform. Not only will this platform protect your company’s sensitive information, but it will also make employee communication much easier and simpler.

The best thing about business communication platforms is all the options you have. You can choose one platform that integrates several different ones. For example, Slack is a great messaging program designed specifically for the office, and it has a large number of integrations. Some of those integrations include Salesforce, Google Drive, Zoom, HubSpot, and so on.

Create and enforce an internal communication policy

The safety of a company depends on an internal communication policy. This policy can protect the company against data breaches and hacks, employee negligence, and similar things. 

It’s really important that the company creates a policy that clearly states what sort of thing is and isn’t acceptable when sending and receiving company-related files and messages. 

However, having a policy is not enough if you don’t enforce it. Employees must follow the steps outlined in the policy in order to keep internal communication secure. There should be a person responsible for making sure that the policy is being implemented.

Internal communications are key to the success of a company. However, they also pose a certain threat to the company’s data and information. To make sure that your company is both successful and secure, you need to be aware of risks and find the best ways to prevent potential data breaches.

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