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Data Security

Data security, data protection, multi-factor verification, password managers, encryption. They’re words we read and hear a lot about, whether it’s to do with the NSA, Edward Snowden or the iCloud hack (remember those photos?) Data security is an understandable concern for individuals, businesses and charities. In 2014, we took on the role of Treasurer for Maidstone Mencap and immediately implemented two-step verification for Office365 emails and Google Drive’s cloud storage. Additionally, we password-protected all sensitive documents.
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Following the iCloud hack, one of the positive outcomes was to focus the mainstream media’s attention on data security and who is responsible for your data. Ultimately, the owner of the data (and not the cloud-storage provider) is responsible for protecting the data. Our advice is:
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* Password-protect all documents containing confidential information.
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* Use a password manager (e.g Zoho Vault) to easily manage (via a browser and/or smartphone) all online account passwords. You only have to remember the password for the password manager. DO NOT forget it or you will have to reset your account and lose all saved passwords; so, be careful, please.
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* Apply multi-factor verification (aka two-step authentication [2SA], two-step verification [2SV], two-factor authentication [2FA], and two-step verification [2FV]): potential hackers must know something (password) and have something (e.g. mobile phone) to gain access to your account. Instead of using Google Authenticator, we recommend Authy because it makes encrypted backups to the cloud, and you can use the app in your browser.
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Encryption is the most secure technique to ensure data backed-up to a cloud-storage provider is protected, even if the provider gets hacked. However, if you forget the encryption password, you will be unable to decrypt your data, so be warned and be careful! We encrypt data using Boxcryptor.
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A good alternative to using two software solutions to encrypt your data is Sync.com. This zero-knowledge cloud-storage solution offers 5GB for free, and highly competitive pricing plans for both personal and business accounts. Sync protects privacy with end-to-end encryption; ensuring your data in the cloud is safe, secure and 100% private. Again, if you forget your password (and because Sync keeps no record), if you lose your password there will be no way to recover it. Be careful!
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For information about how we can help your business, please contact us.

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To find out how we protect our data (and our clients), read our GDPR blog.
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data security