safe dataWhen managing your business, it is critical to ensure your data is safe.  Check out these vital steps to improving your data security.

1. Digital Security

Storing the data in just one place does not ensure that the data will be safe inevitably. A computer, server, or storage media device can crash, get a virus or get hacked or the machine may simply malfunction and quit working. When this happens your data may not be retrievable and important documents could be lost.

Backing up your data is a very important thing to take the time to do because no matter what happens, you will have an extra copy of all of your important documents and business information. Some data backup methods include copying the information to an external hard drive while some do an online data backup process.

Backing up to an external hard drive is effective unless both machines are located in the same office and there is a natural disaster or fire. The other weakness of using an external hard drive is that many times it requires the user (you) to have to go in and manually copy and transfer the data.

Storing data online is now recognized as the most reliable method. You can easily do this if you use online property management software, such as Rentec Direct, that hosts data storage online or “in the cloud”. This kind of software can give more privacy, locations and options to save your businesses important data securely.

Once you’re using online data storage be sure to set a very strong password for your account as the weakest point in the online security chain is always the end user.

2. Physical Security

No, I’m not talking about hiring armed guards. Things like making sure file cabinets are locked or shredding documents containing sensitive data can go a long way when trying to safeguard data. Installing security cameras or key card access only areas where sensitive data is stored is another viable option for larger property management companies. Limiting the number of employees that have access to sensitive data is also an option to reduce risk of a breach in security.

3. Hire Trustworthy Employees and Train Them

Honest and responsible employees are crucial to data security. It’s important to run background checks and call professional references for prospective employees. Once a hiring decision is made it is even more important to properly train your employees. Employees need to know how to handle sensitive tenants information such as credit card numbers, social security numbers, etc. It is also important to ensure that employees are following computer usage guidelines so that they don’t unintentionally expose the computers to threats such as viruses and hackers.

Are there any other steps that you or your company take to safeguard data?