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Off the Record: Am I the only one paranoid about security?

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Yesterday, we ran a story about how leaders are taking a pretty laid back approach to their company’s IT security.

According to the study, 60% of employers do not think they need change passwords to stop unauthorised access, despite 21% of employees admitting they have already accessed confidential data.

I’m going to come out and say it – if you’re one of those bosses who think this isn’t a big deal, you are being extremely silly and careless.

It completely baffles me why companies are not taking stronger measures to protect their own data. It’s all fine and dandy to trust your employees, but come on, let’s get real.

While a majority of those who accessed confidential data did so out of curiosity and probably pose no harm, a quarter of respondents did so out of spite or revenge.

As it is, HR leaders and companies are still trying to find their way around social media. Couple that with an employee holding on to sensitive information who is out for payback, and you might have a bit of damage control coming your way.

We all know employees are more than ready to switch jobs for a minimal salary increase. What’s to say they’re not going to bring private and confidential information along with them to their new employers?

While it is important to be transparent with your staff in terms of policies, practices and company financials, I really think there needs to be a line drawn in terms of what is too much information.

When I was working in a pre-school prior to this job, we were constantly reminded to keep important documents strictly within the property. We were not allowed to bring home lesson plans and student information, and even though we could have very well made copies, that first line of defence acted as a deterrent to any funny business.

And really, that is all I’m urging you to do.

Don’t lock down company information overnight and restrict any and all access. There are things employees need and want to know, and that’s okay.

Maybe it’s the Nervous Nellie in me, but it may not be a bad idea to make sure you’re not leaving the company vulnerable to threats of blackmail, stolen intellectual property or any other security breach.

Just take a moment to think about this while I change the passwords to my online networks and phone for the second time this month.

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