In digital age that we currently live in, most information is stored in a digital format. It makes finding data easier and prevents it from being easily lost or destroyed. However, paper copies of documents are still far from being extinct. Signed contracts and other important documents, which have to be protected due to their value or because they contain confidential information, need to be kept safe and away from getting into wrong hands. Here are 5 ways in which you can keep your important documents safe.
1. Use a specialised storage room
Physical safety of documents is an important matter. Documents, files and back-ups on hard drives should be secured in lockers or specialised rooms. Access to these should be restricted to staff needing to work with these documents. Numbers and uses of the access key should be reported and under strict control. You also need to ensure that employees keep an eye on the document they are using at all times and don’t leave it unattended on the side of their desk or in unlocked drawers.
2. Use a documents safe
A Documents safe or vault provides extra security measures. You could even consider fireproof models. These will protect papers from fire, heat and are password or code protected. These are particularly a good idea for storage of the most vital paperwork and documents that the existence of your company relies on.
3. Know your employees
Important part of the security of your business and confidential data is background checks of your potential employees. Pay attention to any information in their references that rise suspicion. When an employee leaves the company or moves to another department, ensure that they no longer have access to the documents. Additionally, implement ways of reporting unfamiliar faces and suspicious behaviour around storage rooms. Make sure that your staff knows how to react and who their first point of contact in such situations is.
4. React to data breach immediately
If you or any of your employees suspect unauthorised access to important documents, react immediately. Investigate situations without delay to assess potential threats to the business, and safety and security of the employees it might affect. Consider whether you need to inform any authorities and consult your attorney on how to deal with data breaches if necessary.
5. Shred the papers
When you no longer need confidential documents, dispose of them appropriately. It’s generally a good idea to have shredders allocated in close vicinity to photocopiers and printers. Shredding or burning paper before further disposal adds extra level of security and is an effective way of discarding data.