Personal Identifiable Information (PII) is any data that can be used to directly identify an individual. Most people keep their PII in their laptops or on a USB memory stick. PII includes name, address, telephone number, email addresses, social security number, national insurance number, credit card number, and government identification card.
PII is useful when applying for jobs, making payments, and other social services. Therefore, the security of this information is paramount when sharing.
One of the ways of sharing this information between people is by sending the information in an attachment using email. Email is prone to cyber-attacks and thus companies are at risk when sharing their confidential information using plain text email as communication.
Personal identifiable information (PII) that is misused, mishandled, or inadequately protected can lead to identity theft, financial fraud, and other problems that can cost an individual or a company dearly.
Each time information is being shared, your clients are concerned about their privacy and thus it is not enough to just put terms of privacy in words. The client need tangible actions.
Some companies and customers have lost a lot of money in cases of hacking. In other cases, they have been held as ransom and in worst situations, the hackers released confidential information to the public. This calls for concern among customers especially when it involves identity theft.
However, people have different opinions on identity theft; 44% of American consumers are more concerned about a combination of both identity theft and banking fraud, 22% are more worried for their security and that of their loved ones and 18% were more concerned about being victims of a terrorist attack.
Passwords should not be shared with anyone, no matter the situation, same to security questions used when retrieving lost or forgotten passwords.
Customers should also avoid saving passwords in devices that they are using to log in to their accounts like email. Furthermore, when disposing of documents that contain PII one needs to shred them beyond recognition or make them unreadable.
Customers should also be careful when purchasing goods online, especially where they are required to send their location address for their goods to be delivered.
Before sending your PII you should ensure that you are purchasing from the right company because fraudsters have created apps that resemble to those of companies.
Companies should implement practices that secure PII. They should focus on password security. Information about clients should be handled with care. They should use strong passwords to reduce their vulnerability to attacks.
Companies that haven’t secured customer’s PII data, have experienced tremendous losses. Some have been sued by their customers. In some instances, customer’s PII were hacked where the companies did not exercise enough precautions when asking for their PII details.
In addition to paying compensation to the customers, companies have lost customers and consequently ended up closing down or making significant losses. This also creates a bad reputation for the company and loss of partners and investors.
Invest in cybersecurity
A company that invests more in the security of their customer’s PII, has a competitive advantage over their counterparts. It attracts more customers, as well as retaining the already existing customers which in turn leads to an increase in revenue. it is therefore wise to invest in effective privacy practices and policies.
Companies should also be swift to respond to security threats on their PII, and employ competent employees to ensure that PII is protected.
Overall, having good habits of protecting PII has many benefits, including a much lesser possibility of having identity stolen, or even facing fines for violating data protection regulations. Keep in mind that sharing PII online could pose risks if done carelessly.
Fortknoxster helps companies and individuals protect and transfer securely any type of PII and other filetypes, by using an advanced encryption mechanism Fortknoxster acts as a safe bridge during the transfer.
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