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Protecting Sensitive Documents

Although technological advancements have eliminated many of the most difficult physical tasks associated with storing and managing data, securing sensitive documents remains an essential component of a security plan. It’s important to safeguard files, whether they are in digital or hard copy form from unauthorized access. This will reduce the damage that the data breach could cause.

The most common method for safeguarding files is password protection. This makes the file a jumble of numbers and letters to anyone who doesn’t have the decryption key, but allows changes to be made when the password is entered. This is especially beneficial when files have multiple users who frequently modify them for example, forms, surveys, or reports.

A rights management tool can be used to restrict editing printing, downloading and editing. This can be especially helpful for files shared with freelancers, contractors and third-party agencies, where it’s difficult to determine who can access the documents.

It is also important to communicate and reinforce your security guidelines for handling sensitive documents internally. It is important to ensure that employees understand that abiding by these standards is not only a requirement, but an integral part of their job. Have a procedure to ensure that workers who quit or move to another department don’t have access to sensitive information. This includes removing their passwords, collecting access keys or ID cards and deleting the files once they’re not needed anymore.

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