How private is your firm’s data?

One might think that the tech giants in Silicon Valley would make data security and protection a priority, but a constant stream of data privacy scandals from the biggest names in the world is forcing companies to re-evaluate their own data practices and attitudes. While Americans know their data is being “tracked,” they might not fully understand the implications of those actions. In a world where users and companies routinely enter “service for data” agreements, access to free or low-cost software could come at the cost of having their accounts hacked and their information harvested to third parties.

In light of situations like these, it’s little wonder that trust in technology businesses and software platforms is plummeting. A Pew Research Center study on data perceptions and attitudes found that:

  • 93% of adults say controlling who can have info about them is important
  • 90% say the type of info shared about them is important
  • 50% say they feel they have little or no control over how data is shared

For law firms and other businesses that manage confidential information regularly, these trends illustrate why it’s so important to work with providers who are truly committed to data privacy. It’s not just your business that’s at risk – it’s also your clients.

The Importance of Data Security for Your Company

In an economy where data is the new oil, protecting sensitive company information is becoming more critical and more challenging. While keeping your own business’ information secure is essential, it’s doubly important when it comes to protecting client information. One security slip and your company could face potential legal and compliance risks for mishandling a deposition or a sensitive client document.

A massive amount of data is created every day – more than 2.5 quintillion bytes, to be exact – and businesses are spending more than $44 billion a year to access this information. Some of these companies are monetizing your data, and even if they’re not selling it directly, third-party integrations and security weaknesses can also compromise data if not managed correctly. For example, when employees at 18F shared Google Drive documents in 2016, they inadvertently exposed more than 100 governmental Google Drive accounts at the General Services Administration (GSA).

The lesson to be learned? Take precautions when linking integrations to third-party apps, especially those that contain sensitive information, and make sure to use the appropriate authentication protocols.

For businesses, data security and privacy requires carefully vetting all technology partners to ensure that your own company isn’t headed for its own data privacy scandal. Collaboration isn’t just about sharing ideas and documents; it’s also about keeping those ideas and documents secure and confidential.

What to Expect From Your Technology Partners

At Workstorm, we believe privacy is your right and our responsibility. Security, privacy and confidentiality are fundamental rights, not a concession to be made as a cost of collaboration. That’s why Workstorm allows for highly secure sharing and collaboration on sensitive files, like legal documents. We’re also extremely committed to data privacy and won’t ever sell, share or compromise user data.

No matter who your technology partners are, doing your due diligence on their data management and sharing policies is a must before implementing their tools. Here are four rules to follow in any engagements to ensure sensitive company and client details stay secure:

  • No data sharing. First and foremost, your data is your data. It should never be mined and sold to the highest bidder – and on Workstorm, it never will be. Make sure you read the fine print and ask partners specifically what their policies are.
  • Transparent data use. Companies should have their privacy policy published and updated every time it changes. That includes information on encryption of messages, third-party integrations and other need-to-know details.
  • Robust data protections. Your information should flow, not leak, as vulnerabilities can make it easy for hackers to infiltrate and steal data. Workstorm has enterprise-grade encryption that follows stringent security standards, as well as safeguards to ensure all users comply with your business’ own security standards.
  • Customizable for your environment. No two businesses are alike, so make sure that you can adapt technology based on your own company’s security policies. For example, Workstorm offers the option to deploy and host on-premise or in the cloud. This allows for seamless collaboration, as Workstorm allows you to work on secure files directly in the platform – without the hassle of a separate login or link.

In today’s business environment, data security is of critical importance. Workstorm offers enterprise-grade encryption that follows industry security standards, all while providing analytics and technology to proactively ensure user compliance with your security policies.

By bringing together all the people and tools you need in one digital space, Workstorm keeps your data where you want and need it to be – helping you run your business better and avoid that “Silicon Valley” moment.