Call Center Data Security: 3 Contributing Factors
When an organization experiences a data breach, the consequences are multifaceted. Data, trust, reputation, security, and financials are all compromised, and while the effects can be lasting on all counts, dealing with the financial impact can be crippling.
According to IBM, the average cost of a data breach in 2021 was $4.24 million, and companies that are located in the United States have the most expensive data breaches in the world, coming in at an average of $9.05 million. The financial woes of a data breach come from a mix of lost business, customer turnover, lost revenue during the breach, and time to work on getting a new client base following the breach. But one of the largest contributing factors is the time it takes to move past it. The average lifespan of a data breach, from start to finish, has increased almost 10% from 2019 to 2020 (UpGuard), ultimately costing more time and money for the organization.
With the increasing cost and time of data breaches, ensuring customer data is protected is more important than ever. Call centers and contact centers have become a prime target for hackers with all the personal data that is collected and stored.
Do you know what the biggest contributing factors are that cause data breaches? By understanding what causes data breaches, you can be better prepared on how you can prevent them in your organization. Three of the major contributing factors are:
1. Vulnerability of Personal Devices
If employees are using personal laptops, tablets and smartphones for work purposes this can lead to a number of security issues as the IT department does not have control over network security breaches, high-risk application use, and downloads. There is also the risk of the employee’s personal device being lost or stolen
It’s therefore important for organizations to be proactive in implementing policies that protect them from data breaches, such as a Bring Your Own Device policy. Your company’s policy should define the rules of how employees can access company resources. This is also where you should specify how employees must protect their devices from unauthorized access, how your IT team will monitor usage on personal devices, and other steps the IT team will take to manage cybersecurity risks.
2. Employee Error
A study from Stanford University Professor Jeff Hancock and security firm Tessian, found that 88% of data breach incidents are caused by employee error. Employees using weak passwords, storing passwords insecurely, or handling passwords incorrectly, are all examples that allow easy access to your system for hackers. A password policy should be implemented to define standards and rules that require users to have more complex passwords.
With employees working remotely, it’s also important to ensure they are maintaining security. Employees should be informed about the risks of connecting to public WI-FI networks. Requiring users to connect via a trusted VPN connection is just one way to help protect your network.
3. Phishing & Malware Attacks
Phishing and malware attacks have become common occurrences in the news, but do your employees know what to watch out for to help prevent these attacks in your organization? A review of more than 41,000 organizations found that 45% of companies had malware on their employees’ work from home networks.
When employees are focused on their work and bombarded with emails, they may not notice URLs, websites, and email address that appear legit at first glance, but are fake. Clicking on a link or opening an attachment can cause serious damage to your network.
Educating employees on what to look out for when it comes to phishing and malware attacks creates awareness. Utilizing a security awareness training program is a great way to not only educate, but to measure how well your employees handle simulated emails.
The Cost of Not Investing
Utilizing education, training, and policies creates awareness and a better understanding to help prevent your call center or contact center from experiencing a data breach. The cost to keep your call center data secure may be concerning, but it’s important to consider instead what is the cost of not investing?