Sure, you want to create yet another corporate policy like you want another root canal. But not having comprehensive policies to help protect your businesses data and information can have disastrous, even fatal consequences for your company.
Every bit of information you company has, from personal information about employees and customers, to business information about suppliers and partners, must be protected for your company to stay in compliance with government regulations, non-disclosure agreements and contractual obligations.
The following list will give you an idea of the sorts of policies your company needs in place to remain complainant and protect its business information.
Are there any businesses that don’t rely on the web at least for research, training and/or communications? Controlling how employees use the internet for business purposes is key to protecting your business information and making sure the internet is issued ethically and for the intended purposes.
Often an off-shoot of the internet usage policy and more often related to company IT and intranets, an Access Control Policy helps you manage who has access to what systems, resources and information (often through the use of passwords) to help prevent wrongful and damaging use of any of them.
A social media policy outlines how employees, especially those who work directly with customers, should conduct themselves on social media. The policy needs to cover not only social media messaging done on behalf of the company, but also employees’ personal messaging that could affect the company legally or otherwise damage its reputation.
This isn’t merely about having a neat and tidy workplace. Instead, Clean Desk Policies must have data security as their core focus. Basically, a clean desk policy governs what papers, folders and media storage devices must be put away either at the end of the day, or when an employee is away from his or her desk. Employers are responsible for providing adequate storage space and document destruction procedures, including access to a shredder or secure storage areas for documents that are to be shredded.
As access to online media continues to be more widespread, easily available from a smartphone, and less and less controlled by employers, it’s increasingly important to have these and other policies in place to protect your business and everyone associated with it.