Data Privacy: What is it and How to Protect Your Data?

What is Data Privacy?

Data privacy deals with personal information that is obtained on the web, whether that is personally identifiable information (PII) or personal health information (PHI). It is a branch of data security that focuses on the way that data is handled specifically in regards to consent, notice and regulatory obligations (1). 

Why is it Important?

Data Privacy has become an increasingly important issue for companies to address. Closely held company data is one of a business’ most important assets. Data is useful for mapping company performance, making decisions and solving problems faster, improving overall customer experience and measuring the success of your company (2). It provides market insight and competitive intelligence that can give it an operational advantage in its industry.

Data Breaches has Consequences

There are a variety of ways that a data breach can affect your company negatively. The first that will come to mind to most people is the financial repercussions of the breach (4).

 

These financial repercussions factor in a few different ways:

  • reimbursing affected clients
  • response efforts for breach
  • investigating the incident.

 

A negative impact that is less notable, but equally devastating is the reputation damage it inflicts on your brand. Regaining customer trust is difficult after a data breach. There will likely be customers lost during that time period as people become much more reluctant to use your company (4). These effects may not be permanent, but the time and cost to repair the damage can be significant, so it is important to not overlook the reputational impact data breaches cause.

The Alarming Rate of Data Breaches

Data breaches have become fairly common in this day and age. In fact, in 2018, it was reported that approximately 1.244 billion people in the US had their data breached. These data breaches resulted in 466 million records being exposed. That year, nearly half (46%) of US firms had reported a privacy breach. And making matters worse, 77% of IT professionals said that they did not have a plan if a cybersecurity incident occurred (3)! With nearly half of firms reporting cybersecurity attacks, there must be an increased sense of urgency, seriousness & awareness given to cybersecurity. Better prevention and resolution plans to buffer attacks require such focus and resolve.

How Can You Protect Your Data?

Now that you understand the negative effects a breach can have on your company, how can you prevent them from happening?

 

Here are a few tips to help secure your data:

 

  1. Employee Access & Education – Employees tend to be the easiest (and first) route for cybercriminals to access your data, so making sure that only authorized employees have access to crucial data is important. In addition, educating your employees about data breaches and the steps that they can take to ensure they’re only clicking on secure links and emails is critical (5). 
  2. Backup Servers – Having backup servers that can replicate your data is a good preventative measure. This will prevent large data loss that could occur from a breach (5). Ransomware attacks (where data is forcefully encrypted and held for ransom) can be alleviated when backup servers are employed.
  3. Obtaining Data Privacy Software – There is a variety of different software, like SiteLock, that you can purchase in order to protect your site against data breaches. The software SiteLock detects and automatically removes malware and other infections. It also has the ability to increase web speed by as much as 50%.

Contact us at 3PRIME to protect your website with SiteLock!

 

Data Privacy isn’t just good policy, it’s brand awareness

Data privacy deals with some of the most important personal information that users can provide online. Obtaining this data is extremely useful for companies, as it factors into a variety of different things that help to improve overall customer experience, determine corporate policies, and business operations. The way this information is being stored and protected is essential for companies.

Cyber attacks that resulted in data breaches have become increasingly common, affecting nearly half of US firms. These breaches can have serious effects on a company’s operations and its brand image. 

Make sure that you have preventative measures and solutions in place so that these types of data breaches don’t happen to you! A byte of prevention is worth 1.244 billion people needing a cure!

 

Sources:

www.varonis.com/blog/data-privacy/

www.towardsdatascience.com/how-important-is-data-for-your-business-c15a35c6935e

www.statista.com/statistics/273550/data-breaches-recorded-in-the-united-states-by-number-of-breaches-and-records-exposed/

www.itgovernance.co.uk/blog/the-damaging-after-effects-of-a-data-breach

www.entrepreneur.com/article/332794

Learn How to Target Both Online and In Store Customer Moments with Google Partners Connect 8/16

If you are a current retailer or business and are wondering how you can drive up sales, then be sure to pay close attention to the steps from the recent Google Partners Connect event on 8/16. One of the biggest problems that retailers have been complaining about if the recent decline in foot traffic at stores. What is happening is that more customers are using online shopping than ever before. You have to be there for your customers wherever they are: both online and in store.

As a retailer, you need to make an online strategy that helps to drive your mobile website to better connect with customers. Even though foot traffic has declined with retailers, this does not necessarily make it a bad thing. In fact, when people actually do shop at a store, they are spending more money. People are now 25% more likely to make a purchase in store, since they are shopping less. In store, people are also spending 10% more on purchases than they were before.

The good side about customers being connected with mobile is that they are prepared before they even get into the store. The can learn all kinds of information about your business from it’s location to it’s current sale items. Stores are assuming people want to be educated in stores, but people are doing that themselves with online research and learning about the hottest trends. Mobile queries have increased by 25%, which makes it so important for retailers to be present on and offline.

Mobile has now become the center of shopping whether it is researching, browsing or in-store shopping for an item. Retailers need to be there for both online and offline moments to connect with their customer. Since trends are driving customer behavior, a retailer must build towards these trends to grow their business. They would rather want the retailer that is there for them in their moment of need rather than be loyal to a particular brand. They also would rather receive a personable and tailored message from a retailer than a one-size-fits-all message.  The shopping experience should also be seamless, since 53% of users leave a site that takes longer than 3 seconds to load. Make sure the shopping journey is a great experience so you will have return customers.

The power of online shopping with Google is helping retailers to be discovered by new customers from all over. When you are present for your customers, you are 3 times more likely to engage in top positions. If you plan ahead for big events like holiday shopping, you will be better prepared to handle more customers. Plan ahead large promotions and sales, such as planning Christmas promotions right after Halloween ends. Make your whole inventory available on Google shopping during your campaign, to make sure you aren’t losing any business. Stand out by offering promotions like free shipping or coupons. For marketing, remarketing, customer match and marketing similar audience will increase conversion rates. By planning ahead for new customers and offering them a seamless experience online and in store, you will be sure to keep customers and target many more.

Comparing Google Pagespeed Insights and Test My Site with Google

 

Our score from The new Test My Site web application by Google.

Google Insights analyzes web performance, gives feedback and suggestions to improve your web page. This test lets you enter your website URL and gives you your performance on both mobile and desktop. If there are problems that need your attention, a yellow exclamation point will pop up telling you to ‘consider fixing’ and will show a list of the things to improve on. A checkmark in green will highlight the aspects about your website that you have passed. Google released a new site performance application called Google Test My Site. As both interfaces provide advice to website users, there are still many differences that separate both website apps apart.

 

With both the pages, the scores remain the same. Test My Site has the option to email your test results, but Google Insight does not. Test My Site also has pretty visuals, such as bright colors and interesting videos, making it user friendly. It also displays your results on one page, where Google Insights displays results on 2 different tabs – one for mobile and one for desktop. To test if your site is mobile friendly on Google Insights, the website will have you click on a link and send you to another page.

Our results from Google Insights with scores and explanations of how to fix results.


What was nice about the old site, Google Insight, was that it displayed all of your scores right away, and was not separated by large tabs and graphics. They also explain how to fix the issues they identified on your site, where the new site does not. This can be frustrating to any user wanting to get right to the changes Google is recommending, like
implementing browser caching, but not having ready access to resources and recommendations. Insights will show you, for example, if an image is too large what size to make it.

This highlights that the new Test My Site web app is for non-technical users, while the pagespeed insights is the more useful resource for developers, so we hope they don’t take it away!

Since more people everyday are using the internet, page speed is becoming increasingly important. Page speed can determine if a user stays or leaves your website. Whether you have large graphics and videos, or issues with Javascript, you need to consult to consult with a high-end tool like these that monitor your website performance. Once you find out that your website is lagging with page speed, the next step is developing a plan to improve issues.