How data security threats will change data management in organisations

In today's technology-driven world, data security threats are a constant and increasing concern for organisations across all industries. Data management, the process of organising and maintaining an organisation's data resources, is no longer just a matter of ensuring data availability and integrity, but also of protecting sensitive information from unauthorised access, theft, and misuse.

This article will explore the ways in which data security threats are changing data management in organisations, and the steps that organisations can take to mitigate these risks.

Data security threats

Data security threats are constantly evolving and becoming more sophisticated. Cybercriminals and hackers are constantly finding new ways to breach organisational security and access sensitive information. Here are some of the most common data security threats that organisations face today:

  • Malware and viruses: Malware and viruses are software programs that are designed to disrupt, damage, or gain unauthorised access to a computer system. Malware and viruses can infect computers through email attachments, software downloads, or malicious websites.
  • Phishing attacks: Phishing attacks are social engineering tactics that trick individuals into giving away sensitive information, such as usernames, passwords, or credit card numbers. Phishing attacks are typically carried out through emails or fake websites that mimic legitimate websites.
  • Ransomware: Ransomware is a type of malware that encrypts an organisation's files and demands payment in exchange for the decryption key. Ransomware attacks are often carried out through email attachments or malicious websites.
  • Insider threats: Insider threats are employees or contractors who intentionally or accidentally access or misuse sensitive data. Insider threats can be intentional, such as stealing confidential data for personal gain, or unintentional, such as accidentally sharing sensitive information.
  • Advanced persistent threats: Advanced persistent threats (APTs) are targeted attacks that are carried out over an extended period. APTs are often carried out by state-sponsored hackers or other highly skilled attackers who have specific targets in mind.

Steps organisations can take to mitigate data security risks

To mitigate data security risks, organisations need to take a proactive approach to data management. Two steps that organisations can take to mitigate data security risks are:

  • Implement strong data security measures: Organisations should implement strong data security measures, such as firewalls, intrusion detection systems, and encryption, to protect against data security threats.
  • Develop and enforce data management policies: Organisations should develop and enforce data management policies that outline how data should be managed.

How data threats are changing data management in organisations

Data security threats have become increasingly prevalent and sophisticated in recent years, which has changed the way organisations manage their data. Here are some ways data security threats are changing data management in organisations:

  • Increased focus on security: Organisations are now placing more emphasis on data security than ever before. They are investing in cybersecurity measures such as firewalls, intrusion detection systems, and encryption to protect their data from unauthorised access.
  • Data classification: Organisations are now classifying their data based on its sensitivity and importance. This helps them identify the critical data that needs to be protected with more stringent security measures.
  • Employee training: Organisations are providing their employees with regular training on data security to ensure they are aware of the latest threats and best practices for protecting sensitive data.
  • Compliance requirements: Many industries are subject to data security regulations, such as the POPIA, GDPR and HIPAA. Organisations must comply with these regulations to avoid fines and reputational damage.
  • Data backup and disaster recovery: Organisations are now placing more emphasis on data backup and disaster recovery to ensure they can quickly recover from a data breach or other cybersecurity incident.
  • Outsourcing: Some organisations are choosing to outsource their data management to third-party providers who specialise in data security. This allows them to benefit from the expertise of security professionals and access to more advanced security tools.

In summary, data security threats have changed the way organisations manage their data. They are now placing more emphasis on security, data classification, employee training, compliance requirements, data backup and disaster recovery, and outsourcing to third-party providers. These measures are necessary to protect sensitive data from unauthorised access and ensure business continuity in the event of a cybersecurity incident.

Frank Kizito Kasambara

Information Systems Consultant, Johannesburg