The Cold Hard Truth About Private Information

The Russians are coming!  The Russians are coming! 

Sorry, I am not writing a review of  the 1966 comedy starring Carl Reiner, Eva Marie Saint and Alan Arkin.  Nope, not nearly as funny…

The Russians, Chinese, Iranians, eastern Europeans—and probably the US government too—are all coming to a database near you.  They are systematically gathering data about all of us.  No bit of data is too small because it could be the key piece private information that connects all the disparate and seemingly unimportant information they’ve already collected on you.  Imagine creating a digital picture of you, one pixel at a time.  Get it?  No wait, they’ve got it.

We are all in an arms race.  Every time you strengthen your data defenses the thieves think of new ways to penetrate them.  One of the best defenses is a strong common sense.

Don’t use your personal information (or your client’s information) if you don’t have to.  And don’t store/save it if you don’t need to.  If the data isn’t out “there”, it can’t be stolen.

Think About the Private Information in the Title Searches of Land Records

Let’s assume you need to save a database of important documents and records (i.e. land records) and let’s also assume they contain bits of sensitive information that are superfluous.  Consider deleting or redacting just the private information.  Generally speaking, title searchers don’t need social security numbers.  If names and social security numbers are removed, they can’t be stolen and the exclusion of this private data from the document doesn’t necessarily lessen their value. 

If you don’t use it or
need it, get rid of it.

Encrypt... Especially When Private Data is in Motion

Just this last week, we received a hard drive with a large number of documents.  These documents were sent to us by our customer because we provide redaction services.  The drive was not encrypted, and worse, the drive was first sent to the wrong address.  Think about it… unprotected sensitive documents sent to the wrong address.  Mistakes happen but this human error would have been mitigated if the drive was encrypted. 

Take the time to protect
documents in transit.

 

There are too many possibilities with the breach of confidential information. Our job is to eliminate these possibilities with automated redaction services. For more information on our product and services, schedule a brief call with one of our representatives by completing the form below.

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About the Author: David Rasmussen

With 30 years’ experience leading software companies, David is driven by the challenge to consistently find groundbreaking ways to solve customer problems and finds it rewarding to hit the customer’s target and create a great team, build a solid infrastructure, and emerge with a strong value proposition.