The path to strong data security doesn’t start with cutting-edge tools or an army of ethical hacking geniuses. In fact, before even considering cyber defense software, pen-testing, and other such measures, it’s perhaps most critical to lay down a foundation for data management that prioritizes protection.
Essentially, that means authoring the right policies.
Every organization needs data management policies, and those policies need to be comprehensive, accounting for all aspects of incoming and outgoing data across all systems. Even a small oversight can leave room for bad actors to find their way in. It’s worth it to spend the time and effort required to get it right.
So what makes a good data policy? Well, beyond making high-level statements on how to handle data, policies need to refer to a category of data to be protected, and they need to be fleshed out with specific data standards, as well as protection policies. According to The Chief Data Officer Handbook for data Governance, data policies should follow a structure containing six organizing principles:
1. Enterprise data management category (e.g., information lifecycle management, reference data management)
2. Data Domain (e.g., product, vendor, customer)
3. Critical Data Element (e.g., Social Security number, phone number)
4. Organization (e.g., Marketing, IT)
5. Business Process (e.g., product release, customer service)
6. Big Data Domain (connecting to large third-party data sources)
Within these categories, each data policy should make a high-level statement about how data should be stored, handled, processed and used. To elaborate on these statements with concrete requirements, policies need to be documented with standards and processes.
· Standards: Detailed rules governing how a policy should be operationalized.
· Processes: The specific steps that need to be undertaken to implement the policy.
Following this general framework should help an organization identify and build the full set of data management policies it needs to keep itself protected.
Of course, ensuring that all policies, standards and processes have been considered requires significant experience in data security. For any organization looking to build a data management policy structure, Lunarline has the experience and expertise you need. For more information on how we can help, contact us today.