What is Network Security? And How Will GDPR Affect It?

24 January 2018

What is Network Security?

Network security describes the countermeasures put in place to protect a computer network from invasion or breaches.

Who Needs a Network Security Policy?

Any business with a computer network needs a network security policy. A network security policy is basically an outline of all the policies and procedures your business and employees have agreed to adhere to, in order to protect the data held within the network. Data takes all kinds of forms. Personal information, recordings, CCTV, payroll and employee files are just some examples of the data businesses are liable to protect.

A network security policy helps ensure your employees are all on the same page and are working towards the same end: to keep you and your clients protected, make it easier to find out when something goes wrong and outline how to deal with a problem should a breach occur.

Using Network Security Types to Meet GDPR Security Requirements

The date of the new GDPR implementation is May this year. Thus, network security policies have never been more critical for businesses. With the new legislation, businesses have an even bigger responsibility regarding the data protection practices they adhere to and how they process both employee and customer information.

Businesses will have to better protect their data which means stricter network security practices and inclusion of more network security types.

Privacy by Design

What this Means: Businesses must design data systems with the aim of protecting data from the outset. Data protection is now a priority and businesses that don’t comply will be penalised.

Network Security Types that Can Help: Any network security measure that works towards protecting the system from attack is useful. Network access control is perhaps one of the most valuable of these network security types. Access control basically enables you to dictate who has access to what information and on which devices; it doesn’t just refer to physical access but digital. This means that you can stop unauthorised devices from gaining access to certain files and areas on your system and you can give specific access to different individuals. Including access control in the design process of your network system will help you ensure you are adhering to GDPR’s Privacy by Design policy and will prevent the likelihood of breaches at a later date.

Data Breach Notification

What this Means: Businesses must notify relevant parties if data is compromised or network security measures are breached. Processors (those who process, organise and store the data on behalf of the Controller) must notify Controllers (the company that determines the purposes, conditions and means of the processing of personal data) and Controllers must notify the DPA and affected individuals.

Network Security Types that Can Help: It’s important that you have a cohesive and functioning network security system so that you can identify any breaches quickly. Antivirus and antimalware software can not only recognise the intrusion of malware but can also track files, making it easier to spot where a breach occurred. Other network security types that will aid the data breach notification process include mobile device security and intrusion prevention systems. The better covered the entry points of your network security system, the easier it will be to notice and report a breach.

Right to be Forgotten

What this Means: Data subjects hold the right to request the erasure of personal data and businesses must comply if the subject’s request outweighs public interest. Businesses must be able to show that they can fulfil a subject’s request for the erasure of their personal data if it is requested, regardless of whether it is actually granted. In order to do this, companies must know and be able to prove where a subject’s personal data is held.

Network Security Types that Can Help: If data is transferred outside of a network security without authorisation, then the act of erasure becomes much more difficult as the data is in existence somewhere outside of the control of the company. A firewall is a staple security measures that protects your internal network from outside networks. This helps restrict access to the data held on the network.

Another useful network security method includes data loss prevention. DLP technologies make it more difficult for people to upload, share, send or print information. Making the transference of data that much more difficult for your employees as well as foreign bodies is critical as this is where a lot of businesses often open themselves up to error. DLP technologies help enforce the Right to be Forgotten as they make it much harder for people to transfer data using unsafe or unauthorised methods.  

You Need Computer Security and Internet Security System

Finding security solutions for your business should always be a priority and never an afterthought. This is an even truer statement with the oncoming introduction of the new GDPR security requirements. Don’t make a mistake. You owe it to your employees and your clients to take network security precautions. If you don’t, your reputation and wallet may suffer. 

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