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Friday, October 18, 2013

Security breaches a real problem for Canadians

Canadian businesses and consumers are under siege from security breaches that are putting corporate data and customer information at risk of being accessed by malicious hackers.

Category:   Secure File Transfer

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Canadian businesses and consumers are under siege from security breaches that are putting corporate data and customer information at risk of being accessed by malicious hackers. Informatica Security Corporation recently reported that a total of 7 million Canadians have lost $3 billion to cybercriminals in the past year alone, with many incidents stemming from failures on the part of service providers.

Although many Canadians are experiencing security issues, a disconnect between customers and businesses appears to be a serious issue. The news source said that 94 percent of companies said they have never experienced a data breach, even though millions of people have become victims recently.

"Unfortunately, Canadians are in a tough regulatory situation. Forty-two percent of businesses say that they are not concerned about compromising the personal information of their customers, yet almost a quarter of Canadians continue to suffer serious losses," said Claudiu Popa, CEO of Informatica Security. "All those breaches are entirely avoidable. All remediation costs are entirely optional using standardized prevention."

Canadian companies are playing a dangerous game if they do not focus on ways to prevent customer information from being exposed. Public distrust can cause people to take their business elsewhere if companies are vulnerable to attack or data theft.

In many cases, employees are to blame for security breaches, especially if they do not use the data protection tools. Firms that want to ensure staff members do not accidentally reveal customer information can use secure file sharing tools so that any messages sent, received or stored stay within the corporate network. Such solutions may be the difference between losing consumers for good and keeping them for an extended period of time.

Missing SD card leads to security breach
There appears to be no shortage of security breach news in Canada. Canada's Region of Peel experienced an incident that exposed information of more than 18,000 clients from its Peel Public Health's Healthy Babies Healthy Children initiative. The event was caused following the theft of an employee bag that contained an encrypted SD card. People's birth dates, addresses, names and other content were stored on the card.

Emil Kolb, chair of the Region of Peel, explained that the breach was an isolated incident.

"It is not standard or acceptable practice for us to put client information on unencrypted devices," Kolb said. "As part of our investigation into this breach, we will be examining all of our privacy and protection protocols, and tightening controls on the information that has been entrusted to us."

Secure file sharing solutions are not only safe for employees to use, but are not a burden to work with. Some staff members often resort to easy-to-use options that lack the necessary safeguards opposed to tools that are less vulnerable, but more complicated. Secure file sharing strikes a balance between these two needs to make sure corporate and customer information is safe at all times so businesses do not become yet another victim of a breach.