The level of security provided to the sensitive information of a business or an individual determines their privacy. With the digital age progressing fast with every passing second, the concerns on the privacy of data is mounting as well. Whenever and wherever the data is provided, collected, and stored, there is a high risk of its being misused, lost, or being accessed by unauthorised people when left unprotected.
Therefore, the Privacy Act 1988 was set in place to make the entities take essential steps for the protection of customer’s data and prevent it from being misused in anyway. Moreover, this step ensured that the concerned authorities collecting the data would either destroy or at least de-identify the customer’s data once it is not needed anymore.
While the Privacy Act is subjected to a number of organisations, credit providers, agencies, and credit reporting bodies, the entities that do not come under this, should try to follow these rules as well. This will ensure improved security of the personal information of their customers.
The Australian government has also released a guide that will help the organisation secure the private information in the best way possible. This guide is not legally binding. However, the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner (OAIC) refers to it whenever it is undertaking any Privacy Act functions. Further information on the regulatory powers that are to be exercised can be found in the Privacy Regulatory Action Policy.
The data of a customer becomes unsecure and is thus subjected to easy attack from the criminals of the cyber world in several ways. Thanks to the ambiguous nature that a connected world offers, the security concerns have increased tremendously. Mobile networks, BYOD, bringing your own devices in public areas, and IP addresses set to public setting provide environments that are unprotected and are not the best way to access sensitive data.
While the consumers are concerned that their data might be stolen, the government identities and businesses are always on the lookout for protection against malicious cyber attacks on a number of fronts, including even their own organisations.
Components of a Customer’s Data that needs Protection
This means that there is a great need to understand which type of the customer’s data needs to be protected on a priority basis. In order to make it easier for you to identify the data that should be protected, we have compiled a list of components of customers’ data that should be protected:
- Biometric Information: This is used for identifying an individual on the basis of one of their distinguishing biological trait. Such traits include fingerprints, iris and retina patterns, signatures, and DNA. This information comes under the personal identification type and can create many issues if it reaches the wrong person.
- License Number: Personal identifiable information is the licensee number since it is unique and can easily be traced to that individual.
- Medical Information: Another important type of data that needs protection is an individual’s medical information. It can allow a criminal to commit identity theft.
- Date of Birth: Perhaps no other information requires higher level of protection than an individual’s date of birth as it is the most commonly asked question when checking anything for security purposes.
- Employee ID: In the wrong hands, an employee ID can create a lot of problems for the person. Their data becomes unsecure and the thief can use the information for stealing other more important type of data.
- Social Security Numbers such as Citizen Visa code: Stealing someone’s citizen visa code is the most common form of robbery. This allows the culprits to steal IDs and conduct illegal activities through it.
- Patents: These allow a person to have legal ownership of their product.
- Copyright: Anything that is copyrighted for an individual should be properly protected. Theft in this case means that you would be losing your intellectual property.
- Industrial Designs: A company’s industrial design should also be well protected as well since they are responsible for giving them an economic advantage over other competitive businesses.
- Trademark: What is more unfortunate than losing your original trademark? The logo of a company is their identification mark and losing it means losing a lot of clientele as well.
- Data on new business Ideas
- Passwords for forums where the customers market their businesses such as social media
- Legal Documents numbers
- Credit Cards: These should be protected for the safeguard of your hard earned money
- ACH Numbers needs protection as well
- Bank Account Information
- Loan Information
- Payroll Information: This can lead to financial losses
- Non-salary Information (expenses, fringe benefits, pension, etc.)
- Investment Information (Stock, 401K, Trade, etc.)
- Any of the unique identification system that is created by the customer