Cybersecurity has become increasingly challenging due to a dramatically expanded threat landscape. As such, companies must take steps to prevent data loss. To do so, it’s important to develop a clear understanding of the distinctions between data loss and other cybersecurity threats such as data breaches and data unavailability.

Data loss is typically occurs underone of two scenarios. The first is where the information stored on your system has been incorrectly stored or become temporarily irretrievable because of a system failure. While this is a big concern for a business, there’s a good chance this data can eventually be retrieved.

However, data loss becomes far more complicated when it's the result of a data breach involving hackers or malicious users illegally accessing your information and preventing you from getting to it. With such cyberattacks on the rise globally, protecting your business is imperative.

Here, we consider the cost of data loss and highlight managed security solutions that might save your business from a major crisis.

How Data Loss Impacts a Business

Regardless of how data loss happens, such a situation could cause your business massive inconvenience, at least until a solution is found. If your business faces the challenge of critical files gone missing, there are bound to be difficulties meeting the your customers’ needs and achieving business goals. If this data can’t be recovered, you’ll find yourself in an undesirable position information must be recreated from scratch, which isn't always possible.

Every business wants to avoid downtime, but a serious data loss event means your business will be massively handicapped when serving its customers. In fact, many companies shut down temporarily as they attempt to recover information and get back on their feet. According to one study, 60% of small businesses end up closing their doors within 6 months following a significant data loss event caused by data breaches or cyberattacks.

For those that manage to reopen their business, the reputational hit amongst their customer base can also be crippling. Consumers trust you to protect their private banking or medical information, and if cybercriminals steal it, you can expect them to leave you for a competitor. The cost of restoring information and your brand name could be seismic.

It doesn’t matter whether it was caused intentionally or not, such a crisis will see your business hit with a massive bill. While total costs vary depending on the data lost and how much is needed to resolve it, even small instances of data loss with approximately 100 lost or compromised records are estimated to cost upwards of US$18,000. Meanwhile, large-scale breaches see businesses left several million in the red.

Causes of Data Loss

Companies must take data loss protection seriously because data loss happensfor many reasons. From poorly trained employees to sophisticated malware attacks, understand your cybersecurity vulnerabilities to safeguard your company to boost enterprise cyber threat intelligence.

1. Human Error and Neglect

Even the best-trained make mistakes from time to time. This is often how businesses suffer from data loss, as an employee accidentally deletes or locks away documents. Sometimes these situations are unavoidable, but proper training ensures your employees are more mindful of their actions. Remind staff how to backup data regularly while implementing software solutions that automate these tasks.

Besides human error, neglect is another area many businesses struggle to address. This could be caused when someone spills their drink on a laptop or server, causing the system to short circuit and leaving data inaccessible. Your business can stop this from hapening by putting in place robust policies that keep critical technology away from liquids. Managed Infrastructure services arm your business with tailored top-of-line security implementations focusing on storage management, data protection, and more to ensureyou stay focused on your business goals.

2. Viruses and Malware

Viruses and malware attacks are also some of the main causes of data loss, with at least one-third of IT specialists reporting that their companies suffer from them. Typically, malware manages to enter a company’s internal system through phishing attacks, where emails with fraudulent links or attachments are opened by employees.

The last few years have also seen a rise in ransomware attacks. This is where hackers encrypt a company’s data from the inside and demand a ransom for giving its information back. By keeping proper backups of your data, these encounters can often be avoided.

3. Computer Theft

Criminals know that work computers contain sensitive information that businesses can’t afford to lose. This is why your employees’ laptops and smartphones may be targeted by those with malicious intent. With professional criminals targeting workers in taxis, hotels, restaurants, and airports, ensuring your team remains vigilant about their devices is essential.

To protect yourself, ensure these laptops and smartphones can be wiped remotely and any privileged accounts are secure and protected. As long as you have proper backups of your data, knowing that you can simply remove any sensitive data from a device even after it’s been stolen is a lifesaver. Implement Privileged Access Management (PAM) to mitigate any damage that might arise from external attacks. Meanwhile, educate your employees on techniques to secure their devices, such as anti-theft software.

How to Prevent Data Loss

One of the ways to prevent data loss is a robust Data Loss Prevention (DLP) solution. With such a service, your business can prevent data breaches and ensure sensitive information never goes missing. Considering the financial costs and reputational hit from data loss, having cybersecurity tools to analyse network traffic, track data movement, control access, and detect leaks could safeguard your organisation’s future.

Data Loss Prevention services also ensure your business remains compliant with local regulations governing how you handle sensitive business and customer information. Meanwhile, DLP helps your company protect its intellectual property and improves insights received from individuals and data moving through your network.

1. Threat Intelligence Monitoring Services

Every business is at risk of a cybersecurity attack. However, Cyber Threat Intelligence (CTI) monitoring services from M1 help your business identify and eliminate threats before your organisation experiences any data loss. By monitoring network traffic in real-time, this service sends tailored alerts when threats are detected and blocks them.

With businesses constantly under attack from malware and phishing attacks, identifying these raids against employees and customers ensures business data and credentials remain safe. This will protect your brandand prevent financial losses.

2. Cloud Access Security Broker (CASB Solution)

Cloud-based services have helped companies around the globe work faster and smarter. But the widespread adoption of these services has increased the threat landscape, leaving a company’s confidential information at greater risk. Cloud Access Security Broker (CASB) is designed to protect this data as it moves from your internal network into the cloud.

For better protection, M1’s Cloud Access Security Broker rates and assesses new cloud applications within minutes. This ensures your information won't unexpectedly become exposed . Plus, CASB security services provide robust tools for controlling what data is flows into the cloud, how it’s shared, and who has access.