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Data Privacy Day: A Holiday Worth Recognizing

It may not be as well-known as New Year’s or Martin Luther King Day, but Data Privacy Day is  still very important. Data Privacy Day – designated every January 28th – is recognized internationally as a day designed to raise awareness about the significance of online privacy and data protection.

As a privacy professional or computer security expert, you undoubtedly know the consequences of a data breach and the harmful repercussions that can occur when a client’s personal information gets into the wrong hands.

Well, Data Privacy Day gives you the opportunity to spread the word. Led by the National Cyber Security Alliance, the event strives to make privacy and data protection a priority for everyone.

Here are some tips to help your organization or your client’s organization achieve that goal.

Use the latest security software. Make sure everyone – from C-suite executives to the receptionist – has the latest security software, web browser and operating system. Also, make sure to turn on the automatic updates. The investment in this type of software will pay for itself in the prevention of viruses, malware and other online threats.

Use a virtual private network (VPN). Have staff or employees who work remotely use a VPN to protect your network while they’re browsing or doing other work online.

Make online safety a priority. Remind employees and staff to be cautious while working online and not to open suspicious links in emails, tweets, posts, online ads or attachments. They should also use spam filters to block potentially harmful emails from getting through.   

Have a privacy policy. Your company or client’s organization should have a comprehensive privacy policy that will help employees understand your expectations regarding privacy. The policy should be reviewed and updated regularly.

Conduct privacy training. In addition to having a policy, it’s a good idea to train employees on best practices for protecting the privacy of customers’ personal information. 

Long, strong passwords are the best. Most employees probably already know this but it wouldn’t hurt to remind them to use passwords that are at least eight characters long and include a mix of upper and lowercase letters, numbers and symbols.

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