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Privacy Is Big Business For Small And Mid-Size Businesses

Privacy is Big Business for Small and Mid-Size Businesses

If you’re a small to mid-size business and think cyber criminals only go after big business; think again. It’s just as important, if not more important for you to have privacy plans in place. This goes way beyond GDPR and state-to-state rules, this is about how you care for your customers personal information. The return on investment will set the tone for future years of your business. After all, according to a 2018 report by Verizon, 58% of cyber-attacks targeted small business. While it may seem counter-intuitive and larger businesses are bigger fish to go after, they can be difficult to get into. After all, they’ve got the resources to protect their customer’s Data and are hyper aware of what it can be to their business if they don’t. Smaller and mid-size businesses generally don’t have the resources of the larger businesses, and may not focus on cybersecurity like they should which leaves their business wide open for cybercriminals. Chinks in the Armor of Your Data Cybercriminals excel at finding “chinks in the armor” of your Data. They’ll use any advantage to break in from the usual hacking and malware to physical breaches. One improperly secured device can be just the entry they need into your entire system.  What can you do? Be focused in your approach to Data security. Many small businesses tend to put out fires, rather than have a focused strategy. And each approach to tighten security can lead to more opportunity for hacking.Communicate your strategy to every member of your team. Something as small as clicking on the wrong link can lead to a Data breach.Train your staff on measures they can take such as to not click on a link they’re not expecting, to check email addresses and ensure they’re approved or white-listed as okay to access. The more aware your staff are, the better able they’ll be able to help ensure the security of your business’ Data. While staff may be on the front lines, this also requires a commitment from senior executives as well. Understand that just because you’re not dealing in billions of dollars, you may actually be at greater risk. Why? Because unlike the larger companies, your business may not survive the fallout of a cyber-attack. How to Protect Your SMB You can protect your business by creating a Data Security Strategy and consider the following: Encrypt your data;Authenticate your users by either a 2-step verification process or having them enter some kind of code;Authorize access to trusted sources. Encrypting Data helps protect the private and sensitive information and makes it unreadable without the correct key. To ensure only those who are trusted sources have access is through authentication.  Authentication can include username/password, code, tokens, phone number, and image association such as click only the boxes with pictures of street lights or stop signs. This helps your business control who has access and gives you tighter rein over who sees sensitive information and what they can do with it.  By defining the rules and regulations of access to information, training your employees to be aware and what to do to ensure security, you can strike a balance of increased security and transparency to your customers. In other words, the efforts you go through to protect their Data will put you ahead of the competition as you make inroads toward a Data privacy strategy while others take action as things happen. One Final Thought Ensuring your business’ Data is protected and detecting times when it may have been breached is increasingly important to help minimize damage. One issue SMBs face is that it may take longer to detect if there isn’t a Data security plan in place. The more quickly you can detect an issue, the more quickly you can reduce its impact and the more quickly and effectively you can respond, the better.  Interestingly, smaller businesses tend to have a better overall picture of their assets than larger businesses. This can be a boon when you communicate your new cybersecurity strategy to your teams and offers a significant return on investment of your resources. If you’re interested in Big Data and Analytics, we may have a role for you. Take a look at our current vacancies or contact one of our recruitment consultants to learn more.  For our West Coast Team, call (415) 614 - 4999 or send an email to sanfraninfo@harnham.com.  For our Mid-West and East Coast Teams, call (212) 796 - 6070 or send an email to newyorkinfo@harnham.com.

Putting The Pieces Together – Setting Up Your Credit Risk Team

Putting The Pieces Together – Setting Up Your Credit Risk Team

As startups, FinTech, InsTech, and other industries shake up the status quo, it’s more important than ever for the more established institutions to break out of their comfort zones. Break out, buck up, and keep up with those leading the pack in digital transformation. Personal data, privacy regulations, and password protections are just a few of things a Credit Risk team must consider when planning their Risk Management strategies. I spoke to Ewan Dunbar from our UK office about what businesses and candidates today need to know to stay on top of their game. Here’s what he had to say when I asked what the top three roles to consider in the industry were and how they worked together? Top 3 Roles in a Credit Risk Team Process Analyst - helps to identify, design, and monitor daily processes to ensure customer accounts are efficient and effectiveData Modeler – helps to segment large amounts of data into micro and macro trends using statistical analysis. This is where solid programming experience comes in such as R and Java, though SAS is still used in older organizations, it’s being used less so as new tech startups and innovators arise. Decision Science Analyst – This role sets the wider parameters of the company’s goals using quantitative measures, then drills down to determine the best possible course of action. How Do These 3 Roles Work Together? Let’s say a customer wishes to open a bank account. The initial paperwork to be filled out and filed, entered into the system, and monitored through its lifecycle would fall to the Process Analyst. Now, the customer wishes to apply for a credit card. Here, the Data Modeler is responsible for creating a scorecard model to predict, monitor, and evaluate the customer’s ability to make timely payments. The Decision Analyst is the relationship manager who has laid out the overarching goals and following facts, variables, and other data-driven insights communicates and translates the information in a clear manner. What Kind of Education Should I Have? Big Data continues to drive growth in every industry and, by 2020, experts predict an estimated 2.7 million open jobs in Big Data and Analytics. Though it’s been touted from the rooftops for the last few years, there still remains an urgent need for qualified professionals with specific skill sets to fill the gap in these industries. And they’re not easy to find.  For roles in Credit Risk, a brand name education is the name of the game. If you’re just graduating, you have a much higher chance if you come from a red brick or Ivy League background. Experience and a focus on such subjects as statistics, computer science, and mathematics are tailor-made for this industry.  Beyond education, it’s also important that companies ensure their employees have opportunities to upskill in the areas they need most. Training pays for itself as companies invest in their employees. One Last Piece of Advice  Find your niche. This is not a place for generalists. Once you’ve determined your focus and become an expert in your field, you’ll always be in high demand. If you’re looking to dig in your heels and get set up for a strong career path, we may have a role for you. Check out our latest Risk opportunities or contact one of our expert recruitment consultants to learn more.  For our West Coast Team, call (415) 614 - 4999 or send an email to sanfraninfo@harnham.com.   For our Mid-West and East Coast Teams, call (212) 796 - 6070 or send an email to newyorkinfo@harnham.com. 

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