Your corporate information security policy may not be much more than a non-disclosure agreement. Or you may have separate and detailed policies for Internet Usage, IT Access Control, Social Media Use, Clean Desks, and many others.
In any case, they can be ineffective if they are not common knowledge throughout your company, including every employee.
You Might Have The Wrong Attitude Towards Your Corporate Information Security Policies
It may seem obvious that it’s important to make sure everyone in your company is aware of and adheres to your data security policies. But a formal program to promote that awareness should not be a “check-off” item on a to-do list.
That’s the wrong attitude to have about your policies.
Why? Because the ‘check it and forget it’ approach to information security awareness. Assumes that the main purpose of the policies is to protect your company.
How the Wrong Attitude to Information Security Can Be a Costly Mistake
You read correctly in the previous paragraph. You may be contractually or legally obligated to have data security policies. And, to protect your company, you’ve developed the policies and put them into action.
But the reason data security is a part of service contracts with your customers, or government legislation when dealing with the public. Is because of the harm a data breach can do to your customer. Not to you.
So, while the reason for having the policy in place is to meet your company’s obligations. The reason the policies are a requirement – the reasons they exist – is to protect your customer.
If all your company does is promote information security policies enough to meet its obligations, then it may be opening itself up to costly breaches. The less front-of-mind your policies are for your employees, the higher the risk of an infraction.
When one happens, even if your company is ‘covered’ by the fact that, on paper, you’ve met your data security obligations, it’s too late. Your customers’ sensitive data is now in the wrong hands.
The damage to your brand’s reputation, customer lifetime value and ability to attract new customers may be immeasurable.