Friday, February 13, 2015

The Enterprises TV Show Reveals Employee Data Must Be Kept Confidential

The recent news of former Florida Governor Jeb Bush releasing more than 12,000 emails with names, birthdates and Social Security numbers on a public website is a warning to every business of any size about protecting personal data. The Enterprises TV show reveals why all company information must be kept confidential.

Businesses store the personal and financial data of their current and former employees. This includes the above data as well as banking data for payroll records. While many American companies outsource human resource and payroll functions, it is the responsibility of the both the business and the third party vendor to keep this data secure.  Any accidental release of personal and financial data puts both parties at risk for lawsuits.  The warning also is aimed at insurance brokerage firms and company-paid insurance programs.

The Pew Research Center reports that 90 percent of Americans consider their Social Security numbers “very sensitive” information.  And half of those responded that health care information was just as sensitive. The Enterprises TV show encourages businesses to schedule a meeting with all outside vendors to ensure all employee records are safeguarded. Ask for proof that the vendor keeps secure files such as who has access to databases where the data is stored.  Require vendors to show documentation that the strongest methods of data security are taken such as invoices from Information Technology companies working with them.  The liability issues for both companies and vendors are obvious if and when a breach occurs. Prevent it from happening in the first place.

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