Data security, also often referred to by terms like computer security and information security, is the practice of protecting your data (stored in computers, servers, websites, databases, etc.) from getting corrupted and preventing any unauthorized access to it. In other words, data security seeks to ensure that your data is available to you whenever you need it, yet any unauthorized person can’t access it without your permission.
Data security technology or ways to protect your data
There are various technologies and methods to implement data security:
Encryption: In this method, data is coded or scrambled into unreadable form using different algorithms. Authorized person can decrypt or decode the data using an associated key.
Authentication: The login and logout process is the example of user authentication almost all of us use every day. The system gives you access to the data only when you are logged in using your username and secret password.
Security software: Using security software like antivirus, internet security, anti-spyware, etc. guards your data from being corrupted, stolen and spied upon.
Data backup: This is more of a safeguard against data corruption/deletion rather than protection from unauthorized access. Just in case you lose your data, you should have a backup to recover it from.
Importance of data security on internet
Imagine what would happen if somebody steals your credit card details and starts spending on your account. Extremely frightening, isn’t it? Considering the fact that we are often required to use our sensitive financial information while carrying out online transactions, usage of strong data security measures becomes all the more critical.
Websites that collect your personal information like email, mobile number, and so on, needs to ensure that they have proper security in place to prevent the data from falling into wrong hands. This responsibility increases many fold for businesses and websites that require you to enter sensitive information like bank account and credit card details. And with our online activities on the rise, the type of websites falling under this category is ever increasing – banking, online wallets, cab booking, movie tickets, online gaming, and what not. For example, while playing online casino games, you may only want to go with a safe and secure site like casino.com rather than one that does not value your data security.
Healthcare and recruitment industries are also becoming increasingly sensitive about data protection and security. As the healthcare industry is moving towards electronic medical records (EMR), there needs to be a secure mechanism for handling patients’ data by doctors, hospitals, laboratories and other medical facilities. Likewise, recruitment companies need to ensure that the data pertaining to their clients and candidates is safe and secure in order to avoid any possible litigation and also to increase their own credibility.
Data security is vital for any organization irrespective of its size and operations. Devising a good data security policy involves risk assessment, planning, identifying the data you have, and securing it.