Office Insurance Tips - The Risks of Portable Data Drives & Devices

Office Insurance Tips - The Risks of Portable Data Drives & Devices

On 1st March 2015 at the World Mobile Congress in Barcelona, SanDisk announced their new microSD Card with an incredible 200GB capacity!

Ever increasing storage space may be great news for personal consumers and business users alike, but with more data comes increased data security risk and potential for data loss.

Data Breach Risks

Should your business lose data, not only could it be very damaging to your reputation, but you could face legal litigation from third party companies or individuals who’s data has been breached.

Wide of the individual lawsuits, regulators are now taking a very dim view of data loss and fines in excess of £100,000 are not uncommon.

Data Breach Insurance

Typically, a standard Office Insurance package will not provide cover for data loss as standard, but this may be available as a policy extension, or via your Professional Indemnity Insurance.  

However, for more comprehensive cover including management of the data breach and associated public relations support, you may want to consider a specialist Data Breach and Cyber Insurance policy.

Popularity Breeds Risk

Portable data drives, USB sticks and MicroSD cards have become a popular way to save, store and share data because they are small and very convenient.

They are available at most retailers and some USB thumb drives, are often given away as promotional marketing items by many firms.

However, with their increasing popularity, your employees may overlook security protocols, exposing your business’s data and systems to a security breach or malicious attack.

The Risk Is Very Real

The loss of confidential data due to an employee losing or misplacing a portable drive is unfortunately relatively common.

Many high profile companies have suffered a detrimental data breach like this, costing them the public’s trust and expenses to repair and contain the damaging effects.

Data Management

Decide on a clear written process and plan of action for handling any portable data drives within your business.

Establish a protocol of password protecting and encrypting all drives to protect the sensitive data they can carry.

Encryption will allow only computers with the encryption software installed to read and access the drive.

This stops employees from accessing the drives on machines they are not supposed to, including home computers, preventing them from exposing the drive to harmful viruses or malware on their computer, or misusing the sensitive data on the drive.

More advanced security measures are now available to include biometric access technology, which requires a fingerprint scan to use the drive.

Mobile Protection

Protecting laptop data is one thing, but don’t forget the growing influence of smartphones, tablets and phablets.

If employees are using these devices for email or carrying business data you should engage with your service provider to ensure the appropriate security and data protection is in place – including the ability to remotely wipe lost devices.

BYOD – Buy Your Own Device

Some firms have adopted a BYOD or Buy Your Own Device policy and if you allow access to business data on employee devices, security should be the highest priority.

Consider bespoke software such as Good, which can effectively manage business data across a variety of devices and platforms.

Education Is Key

Keep your team Informed of the risks associated with portable data drives and your company’s policy regarding how to protect them.

Regular reminders to your employees of these risks and policies through posters, email reminders and notes on your firms' intranet are simple and low cost, but can be very effective.

Even though most employees know the facts, they often forget, or believe that it wouldn’t happen to them as they are always “very careful”. However, even if someone lets down their guard down for a second, it can put your entire business at risk.

FREE Business Insurance Review

Insync specialises in all forms of cover for professionals.  We can Compare Office Insurance and Professional Indemnity Insurance in minutes across our panel of the UK’s leading insurers.

At Insync we also recognise the ever changing business environment and threat of cybercrime and data breach. With this in mind our leading Professional Indemnity packages will often include FREE Cyber Insurance – please contact us for a free business review.

You can request a quotation online, or call one of our expert Gurus on 0330 1240730 for a free consultation.