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In this age of digital communication, many businesses and organizations handle large amounts of data on a daily basis. Emails are sent, information is exchanged, and messages bounce from one person to another. Most of this data can safely be made public, but some files contain information that should be kept private, such as personal details and financial documents.

However, many of the internet services that people use every day is insecure. Tech providers such as Microsoft and Google control your data and, in some cases, can legally access your files without you knowing. Your employees can send unencrypted files, leaving them vulnerable. Even your clients can forward privileged emails to unauthorized parties.

Not knowing which files to secure undermines your security and privacy. Even if you store your data in your private server, you can still leave your business exposed if you don’t practice adequate data security protocols.

Which files to protect

As a rule of thumb, files shared with external parties (e.g., clients, partners, vendors) should be protected by a strong password. While not every file has to be encrypted, some types of data require stricter rules. Below are some of the most common file types that require elevated security.

Trade secrets

More and more businesses are adopting flexible work practices, with people dividing time between the office, their homes, and outside spaces. Employees need to be able to access their work files from anywhere, which can lead to gaps in your security. They may transfer data to a flash drive or email them to themselves. However, flash drives can be stolen and emails can be intercepted.

Client data

Many businesses handle documents that contain personal, legal, and financial information. For instance, a health clinic sends highly sensitive data to their patients, including test results, identity documents, and account statements. A data leak can be devastating to both the business and its clients, and can lead to penalties, reputational damage, and even litigation.

Personal information

Cybercriminals routinely target businesses and organizations that store personal information. Once they get their hands on personal data, they can steal an individual’s identity to conduct a wide range of crimes. Identity theft can be prevented by adopting elevated security measures for the following types of files:

  • Tax information
  • Bank statements
  • Credit and debit card information
  • Insurance policies
  • Identity documents such as national ID cards, birth certificates, and passports

How to protect your files

Your first step is to ensure that your data is stored safely and securely. A cloud platform like Nextcloud allows you to have full control over your data. It is also designed with security features that help keep your files safe.

You can set Sendent to generate a unique password every time you share files through Microsoft Outlook. For added security, Sendent’s Secure Mail feature also allows you to upload both the attachment and the email body to Nextcloud, ensuring that the data and content you send are kept secure in your private server.

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