WatchGuard Blog

Data Privacy Dilemma: How to Address Growing Concerns in an Extremely Online World

Users are becoming increasingly aware of where and how their information is shared, and their concerns regarding the need to keep that data private are growing in turn. Digitalization, rising daily averages for time spent on the Internet and connected devices, along with the ongoing proliferation of cyberattacks, have made individuals more cautious than ever when it comes to providing information online – and rightfully so.

According to a study conducted by The International Association of Privacy Professionals (IAPP), 68% of consumers worldwide are concerned or very concerned about their privacy on the Internet – and 67% have decided against making an online purchase for privacy reasons. Companies should take note and act accordingly. Following cybersecurity best practices is essential, as is taking the necessary steps to keep organizations in compliance amid new and changing regulations. Those that employ technical tools and strategies to ensure their customers’ data stays fully protected will be the best positioned to address further concern and challenges as the privacy landscape continues to evolve. 

How to promote customer data privacy

Celebrated annually on January 28th, Data Protection Day – or “Data Privacy Day” as it’s known outside of Europe – is a great opportunity for business professionals and cybersecurity experts to raise awareness about the importance of privacy and data protection in our increasingly online world. 

In honor of this year’s observance, here are a few key tips and recommendations for strengthening your privacy posture in service to your customers.

  • Invest in identity solutions that directly support data privacy 

    Safeguarding your employees’ credentials is one of the best ways to keep your customers’ data safe as well. Solutions that verify user identities through multi-factor authentication (MFA), enable corporate credential management with advanced password generation capabilities, and provide proactive dark web monitoring and exposure alerts are highly effective when it comes to preventing cybercriminals from gaining access to employee accounts. 

    Better yet, with WatchGuard AuthPoint Total Identity Security, combining and deploying the power of all three is a breeze.

  • Monitor HTTPS web encryption 

    Although HTTPS is designed to protect digital data confidentiality by encrypting users’ connections to and from websites, malicious actors are constantly finding new ways to bypass the encryption technology HTTPS relies on to gain access to domains and compromise website security. We strongly recommend monitoring the status of encrypted websites to ensure that they are safe spaces for users and don’t put their devices or data at risk. 

    To protect against phishing, malware, and ransomware threats, WatchGuard DNSWatchGO proactively identifies DNS requests bound for malicious domains and blocks connections to malicious websites in real time. By monitoring and correlating the DNS traffic against WatchGuard’s intelligence feeds, DNSWatchGO makes it easy for you to thwart risky clicks before they have a chance to become major data security incidents for your customers.

  • Prioritize unified cybersecurity 

    Cybercriminals exploit gaps in security to perform data theft. Combatting the dynamic and ever-changing threat landscape requires an integrated security approach that allows managed security providers (MSPs) to deliver multiple powerful products and services that work intelligently with one another to cover the entire threat surface. 

    The WatchGuard Unified Security Platform architecture is purpose-built to do just that; bring platform elements together to both eliminate gaps and elevate and harmonize the overall security delivery experience. By re-envisioning cybersecurity technology so that it is powerful and simple to use for any organization, our platform provides the comprehensive security needed to defend business environments, users, and devices effectively, all while ensuring that the privacy of the sensitive data in between is protected (for you and your customers’ peace of mind).

At the end of the day, data will always be valuable information for organizations and users as well as their online adversaries. Third-party data theft can significantly damage an organization’s reputation. The impact of such a breach can also create serious legal and economic repercussions for the parties impacted and lead to dire consequences for the future of their business. Addressing data protection thoroughly and implementing an integrated and updated cybersecurity protocol for your organization is crucial. Protecting the privacy and security of all your sensitive information in the process – whether propriety, customer, or associated with any other third-party – is paramount. 

At WatchGuard, we encourage you to keep the above best practices, along with any other lessons you’ve learned or shared this Data Privacy Day, top of mind throughout the year. By making a more conscious effort to build upon our collective knowledge – from now to next January 28th and beyond – we can continue to promote data privacy together and better support data protection for all. 

Be sure to check out the following articles for additional data privacy insights, and subscribe to the WatchGuard Blog to get even more tips and news your business can use, delivered directly to your inbox. 

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