Every year the number of Internet users is growing, so does the time spent online. According to Statista, in 2020, the number of active internet users reached 4.66 billion accounting for 59% of the global population with 145 minutes spent on social media daily.
The Internet overlaps so strongly with businesses, communication, and entertainment that no private user or company is ready to abandon it easily. This great convenience leads to a major Internet concern – online data security. For example, in 2020 in the US only there were 1001 registered cases of data breaches, and 155.8 million individuals suffered from exposing their sensitive information online.
However, companies can take some effective measures to secure their digital data and content. In this article, we will explain how to protect your content online and avoid cyber threats.
Why Do You Need to Secure Your Data?
Information security is an essential element for the success and survival of any business. Companies have to make sure that no sensitive customer data, bank account details, or any proprietary information becomes exposed to third-parties or cybercriminals. For this, businesses need to realize the negative consequences they can face in case of poor data protection. Let’s have a look at the major ones.
Well-protected data means reputation
Many businesses keep their customers’ private information, like names, birth dates, addresses, credit card details, and others. The leakage of such data can lead to immediate damage to their reputation and its restoring will take several years at its best. Therefore, it’s essential for businesses to keep their customer data well-protected and promote a positive brand image in the market.
Poor data protection results in financial loss
Even those companies that don’t run their businesses online recourse to the services of digital accounting and banking. As a result, the data on all the banking operations as well as bank accounts may be vulnerable to hacker attacks. Moreover, data breaches can weaken investors’ confidence while customers can start searching for alternatives and buy from competitors, thus decreasing businesses’ revenues.
Security breaches lead to a decrease in productivity
Data loss is critical for any business. Once it happens they have to pause the routine business workflow and start dealing with the emergency situation. Above all, serious hacker attacks often end up with system failures and malfunctions, making it only worse. Therefore, those companies that refer to online banking or have their general ledgers in the cloud should give particular consideration to their data security systems.
Who Do You Need to Secure Yourself From?
When considering their digital content and data protection, companies should realize who can represent a threat to their data. Let’s look in detail at the three institutions that can be interested in your business data.
- Cybercriminals come after the business data to sell it to obtain profit. Also, they can take devices and various hardware hostage by installing ransomware on them. They will demand a business pay a fee for unblocking, though later can cause even more problems.
- Advertisers are the companies that collect customer data for targeting and selling their products. It’s not a secret that Google and Facebook collect their users’ data for improved advertising based on their preferences and needs.
- Governments often track their own residents to prevent crimes in their countries. However, some companies want to keep their data secret as it influences their position in the market or they can depend on some unique developments they don’t want to make public anyhow.
- Content pirates are the organizations or individual internet users that illegally distribute the copyrighted content on their platforms in order to make profits from it. Content pirating is one of the most wide-spread types of data theft. Therefore, the companies that produce their own unique content should be aware of how to protect it well.
Ways of Protecting Your Digital Content
Here is a list of the cutting-edge technologies and techniques that will help companies to protect their digital content and prevent its stealing.
Today, mobile, web, and desktop applications represent open systems. They can easily integrate with third-party services like Facebook, Google, and others, and exchange data with them. As a result, some private data can become exposed and it requires strong protection. Software developers use one of the most effective ways to secure vulnerable information – encryption.
Encryption is the process of data encoding for its secure exchange over the Internet. For this, software developers use various encryption types like symmetric that works with a single private key, and asymmetric that requires two keys for encrypting and decrypting the data – a public key and a private key.
To send encrypted content via the Internet, users can utilize various content-encryption tools. They help to keep it secure and unchangeable, ensuring that businesses exchange genuine data with their customers and partners.
Digital rights management (DRM)
Digital rights management solutions are another way to secure content from unauthorized viewing. These tools protect videos, audio files, and texts from illegal distribution and posting online. For this, content makers need to purchase a special program that encrypts and packages their content. Only the users with a DRM license can access the encrypted information.
Tokenization is one more way to protect data. Tokenization is the process of encrypting a piece of data like a URL and attaching it to a token. Token will serve as a reference to the encrypted data though it has no meaning or value in case it’s hacked. This way content providers can create special secure URLs with validation access to a site or make the access temporary.
Watermarking is an effective way to prevent Internet users from distributing video content illegally. For this, content makers can put invisible watermarks on their videos. These watermarks can include an IP address, clients’ IDs, or their names. If the buyer posts a copy of the video online, a special program can decode the watermark and identify the buyer.
Content makers can define the region where they want to provide access to their data. This way, no visitors from the outside will be able to view the content. The technology is called geofencing and it’s often used on such platforms as YouTube, Facebook, and others.
Data and content protection are becoming a burning issue in the digital world. Businesses that give the top priority to the safety of their content and sensitive data manage to develop strong and reputable brands.
Luckily, there is a wide range of ways on how to protect business content and data, including encryption, use of DRM, tokenization, watermarking, geofencing. All these methods ensure that only authorized users have access to digital information, preventing its illegal distribution over the Internet.