In today’s digital age, data is being generated at a breakneck pace. In just the last two years, 90% of the world’s data has been created.
If an office had to print out and file every single email, cloud document, chat, or other data they created on a daily basis, they’d soon be out of business due to the costs of all that ink and paper, not to mention having to find space for all those filing cabinets.
Companies are storing all or most of their data digitally these days, not only to save money, but because it’s the most efficient way to keep track of all that information. This is why digital document management has become so important.
Managing electronic information comes with its own set of challenges:
- Making it easy to find
- Keeping it secure from unauthorized access
- Ensuring it’s backed up properly
- Making it accessible for employees from multiple applications
If digital documents aren’t being handled efficiently, it can lead to employees having to recreate documents they can’t find, information being deleted, or a data breach that compromises sensitive files.
A way to avoid data management mistakes is to adopt best practices when it comes to how you store and protect your digital files.
Top Ways to Safeguard Your Electronic Documents
A full 90% of all digital documents are unstructured content that is stored across different applications that don’t communicate with each other. When you don’t have a structured strategy in place to handle your data mangement, it’s much easier for it to be lost, breached, or stolen.
Your business data is really the lifeblood of your company. Without it, you can suffer irreparable damage. Following are best practices when it comes to digital document security to help keep your data and business protected.
Store All Your Documents in One Place
Using a single document management system allows you to enact security policies for that data that can apply to your files no matter where they came from. If you have files spread across different storage platforms, you could end up with a mess when trying to apply file permissions or any type of controls for security.
A single platform makes file management easier, helps reduce redundant files, and allows global security policies to be applied.
Use Folders to Group Sensitive Documents
Using your folder structure in a document storage platform can help you keep more sensitive documents safeguarded. For example, if you store all documents considered “confidential” under the same master folder, then you can simply apply security permissions on that main folder, instead of having to remember to set them on every subfolder or file.
This helps you not only keep track of access to your most sensitive documents it also makes securing them less complicated.
Use Sensitivity Labels in Office 365
If you use Office 365, take advantage of sensitivity labels that allow you to protect documents from the time they’re saved and beyond. Sensitivity labels allow users to classify documents as they’re being created in Word, Excel, or another program and apply security policies (do not copy, etc.) based upon that label.
Security labels can also be set to automatically apply to a document based upon certain keywords and can be set to apply encryption or watermarks on labeled content.
Set Access Levels Using the Principal of Least Privilege
Do all your employees have access to all data in your cloud or onsite server document storage? That’s a big security risk and one that could result in a data breach should a hacker get ahold of anyone’s login credentials.
The principal of least privilege is the practice of assigning access levels based upon the absolute minimum a user needs to perform their job. For example, your sales manager might not need access to your HR documents on a regular basis, and your accounting team might not have any need to access your R&D files.
Access levels on folders and documents put a barrier in place should hacker gain entry to your document management system using a stolen password. In addition to who can access a file, you’ll also want to assign other permissions like whether a file is read only or can be shared or not.
Back Up Your Document Storage
Whether you’re using a cloud-based system or on-premises, it’s vital to keep your data backed up so you have another copy should anything go wrong. Servers can crash and cloud platforms can be unavailable for a variety of reasons, having a backup ensures your business continuity in the face of any type of data loss disaster.
Use Good Cybersecurity Practices
Hackers are increasingly targeting document management systems like Google Drive and OneDrive, because they’re a treasure trove of information. You want to be sure you’re using good cybersecurity practices, such as ensuring a virus scan is performed regularly.
One of the most important ways to guard against a password breach of your digital documents is to enable multi-factor authentication and ensure anyone accessing your document storage is using it when they sign in.
Increase Efficiency & Reduce Costs with Digital Document Management
Technology Visionaries offers comprehensive and secure document management solutions that help you reduce costs and keep your electronic files easily searchable and safeguarded.
Contact us today to learn more! Call 732-587-5960 or contact us online.