Projects involving large amounts of sensitive data are being created in large amounts everyday. One issue that remains concerning these data is privacy. And not only does it include risks of data-theft, but also complying with the regulations on protection of personal information.
A study made in France (2014) by the consultancy Accenture, among CEOs, indicated that when it comes to implementing “big data” projects, 60% of respondents mentioned privacy as their main obstacle, before costs and talent shortage (Schwyter, 2015).
To make it worse, new tech tools and software arrive in the workplace everyday increasing constantly the risk of seeing someone penetrate your firm’s information system. Firms are well aware of the risk they are facing but many feel they will never be able to cope with the pace at which security measures have to change in order to adapt to all new software, upgrades and devices (Desjardins, 2013).
In addition to the danger of being hacked, firms in certain industries (banking, insurance) must comply with drastic security policies concerning the personal information of their clients (Schwyter, 2015). In addition to considerable repercussions in term of brand image, if their information system were to be breached, the firm would be facing lawsuits and fines that could have serious cost issues.
To prevent as much as possible all issue related to information privacy, firms should implement strict information privacy policies (Desjardins, 2013).
- All data stored on the cloud should be hidden using “ad hoc” technologies.
It is also highly recommended to encrypt all information, if possible.
- For all sensitive information on employees, it is possible to anonymize them. It will create surrogate information, which are of no interest to hackers
- Concerning the organization of this information, a classification should be made of all projects in accordance to their associated risk
- Finally, data security and privacy should be emphasized in trainings and also constantly reminded to all employees, from all hierarchical levels in order to maintain constant awareness and be able to prevent any problem.
In addition to all policies that employees should follow, it is important that all information systems be protected by firewalls. It is sometimes worth investing more than you had planned in information security as it could save you time and money in the future (Herold, 2015). Lastly, it is key for all firms to always consider privacy issues when discussing new ideas so that all issues can be resolved at the beginning of the process and not impede its development in later stages.
Desjardins, C. (2013). 93 % des entreprises françaises ont subi des pertes de données informatiques. [online] Les Echos Business. Available at: http://business.lesechos.fr/directions-numeriques/technologie/cybersecurite/93-des-entreprises-francaises-ont-subi-des-pertes-de-donnees-informatiques-8108.php [Accessed 15 Oct. 2015].
Schwyter, A. (2015). Big Data : comment sécuriser ses projets ?. [online] ZDNet France. Available at: http://www.zdnet.fr/actualites/big-data-comment-securiser-ses-projets-39826460.htm [Accessed 15 Oct. 2015].
Herold, R. (2015). 10 Big Data Analytics Privacy Problems | SecureWorld. [online] Secureworldexpo.com. Available at: https://www.secureworldexpo.com/10-big-data-analytics-privacy-problems [Accessed 15 Oct. 2015].