Government IT policies you need to know

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computer support servicesWith the exponential growth of the internet, has come the mass input of sensitive personal data, from credit card details to passport numbers. Unfortunately this has brought with it new online threats, with data prone to attack from hackers and viruses.

National governments and international bodies were initially slow to react to the increased threat level, which meant companies were lax with their online security and data protection. However, due to several reports revealing loss of sensitive data hitting the headlines, the Government has gradually introduced more thorough laws and policies. The onus is now heavily on companies to ensure that they are sufficiently protected. Here is our advice to ensure that your company is sufficiently secure and protected from hackers and viruses.

Password and Encryption Policies

The protection of your customers personal data should be of the utmost importance, as much so as your sensitive business information. However, often this information is just a username and password away. It is recommended that all companies employ a strong password policy ensuring that all passwords contain complex character combinations and are changed frequently. A good example of a password policy can be found on ClearRisk. Encryption of all personal data is also strongly recommended, as the loss of unencrypted personal data often punished with heavy fines.

User Permissions

If your business has employees that require differing levels of access, then it is good practice to restrict staff from carrying out certain actions and having access to sensitive data. This reduces the risk posed if that account gets hacked or contracts a virus, as the intruder will have limited access, thus it is recommended that you restrict as many permissions as possible.

Other Internal Policies

You should also have detailed policies that inform your employees of your company’s stance on general data handling, email use, remote working, social media, operating system handling and file sharing. Ensuring that the importance of data protection is realised by all.

The Data Protection Act and its Ramifications

The UK government has introduced regulations that protect customer data which are strictly enforced with fines up to £500,000. Fines are often issued when companies make one of the following mistakes:

  • Theft of a laptop, mobile or tablet containing unencrypted personal data.
  • Disclosure of personal data to incorrect recipients via email.
  • Unencrypted USB sticks containing personal data lost or stolen.
  • Personal data uploaded insecurely onto the Internet.

If you wish to discuss data protection or need some advice on how to set up your company’s IT policies, feel free to contact us on 0161 660 5154 or email us at

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