October 28th 2013
While safeguarding the confidential information regarding customers, employees and products is a critical process in today's business world, decision-makers should not only think about the tools. Executives need to put their information protection initiatives in context of their respective industry, location and client base. In other words, organizations need to keep regulatory and legal compliance requirements in mind when building a defensive program.
In the past, there was an idea that small and medium-sized businesses did not need to live up to compliance requirements, which is simply not true. Companies of all sizes need to understand how various types of data must be protected, as the size of a firm is mostly irrelevant.
Decision-makers need to consider how different regulatory needs will impact them. The health care sector, for example, is often much more strict about their regulatory requirements than the rest of the business world. This is largely because hospitals and other facilities are nearly always responsible for managing highly sensitive personal information that could lead to identity theft and other crimes if released or exposed.
In some cases, organizations should look at the companies that have gone before them. In other words, executives should see what their competitors are doing to meet compliance and either take similar approaches or another route that may make protecting information less complex. At the same time, however, smaller firms cannot necessarily do what their rivals are doing without putting any effort into their security compliance projects, as this will likely introduce challenges associated with generic and non-customized endeavors.
As businesses continue to implement data protection projects to improve operations, decision-makers must keep compliance requirements in mind, as failing to meet critical industry standards may tarnish reputations and make it more difficult to maintain a respectable brand.