Malicious actors are becoming more sophisticated by the day. If your organization stores sensitive data like Personal Identifiable Information (PII) or other critical work-related information on laptops and desktop computers, then disk encryption should be one of your top priorities. Laptops, especially, are vulnerable to data breaches.
For example, the loss of an unencrypted or unprotected laptop can have catastrophic impacts on your business. This is because a third party can easily have access to your critical data and use them for nefarious activities. This is why you need to have disk encryption on all your computer hard drives.
Disk encryption will ensure that your sensitive data are well-protected if you ever lose your devices. Read on to learn more about disk encryption.
What Is Disk Encryption?
Data security is one of the biggest concerns among internet users today. Product consumers and software application users are constantly seeking which products offer them the best cybersecurity protection. Disk encryption is a major way for businesses to ensure the protection of their customers’ details.
Encryption means that you’re encoding information to make it unreadable without special knowledge, passwords, or keys. Disk encryption uses sophisticated mathematical functions to protect sensitive information from unauthorized persons. Disk encryption technology utilizes disk encryption software or hardware to encrypt every bit of data that goes into a disk. This provides an extra layer of security that prevents hackers from accessing the data on the disk.
Why Is Disk Encryption Essential?
According to Verizon’s 2015 Data Breach Investigation, 45 percent of healthcare breaches occurred due to stolen laptops. Organizations that don’t encrypt the disks where they store their critical data risk getting hacked. In 2017, Lifespan, Rhode Island’s largest health network, suffered the theft of 20,000 patients’ PII because an employee’s unencrypted and non-data protected Macbook was stolen. This is just one of the numerous examples of the catastrophic impacts of unencrypted hard drives. You need disk encryption on all your computer hard drives.
A major concern many people have about hard drive encryption is the fear that the encryption and decryption processes will cause their computers’ processor speeds to slow down. However, this is a thing of the past. Intel, as far back as 2008, added a new CPU feature called AES-NI that’s now available on almost all Intel processors.
AES-NI can perform several parts of the encryption process about ten times faster than was once thought possible. With disk encryption, unauthorized persons cannot gain entry into the disk on a stolen laptop to cart away your data crown jewels.
Encrypting hard drives should be a standard operating procedure in your organization. This is because regulations such as The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) already have many organizations putting hard drive encryption in place. So, hard drive encryption doesn’t just help you protect your customers’ PII, it also ensures that you’re complying with industry-standard regulations.
What Should You Look For In Disk Encryption?
As you begin to take disk encryption more seriously in your organization, it’s even more important to know what approach to take. There are various ways you can encrypt data. However, you have to know which approach is most suitable for your organization.
While it’s true that every type of encryption has its benefits, there are a few essentials you should look out for when performing disk encryption. In this section, learn about three vital things you should pay attention to when encrypting the critical data in your disk.
1. Client-server communication
You should ensure that your data encryption supports client-server communication. Make sure the disk encryption software doesn’t require custom firewall rules in case an administrator needs to make important changes like a password reset.
2. Password resets
You should think about how users can securely reset their passwords if they lose their encryption keys. Preferably, password rests should be done via direct communication with an IT administrator who confirms users’ identities.
3. Encryption level
There are several encryption algorithm types available out there. Most of them have different degrees of complexity that make some more difficult to break than others. Some of the harder strains of encryption include 3DES (2x 56-bit encryption), Blowfish (a 64-bit block cypher with a single 128-bit encryption key), and most importantly, the Advanced Encryption Standard (256- bit encryption).
Additionally, if your organization has managed users, you should check if the RSA Algorithm secures the exchange encryption key between client and server. That way, you'd be able to protect any critical pieces of code while in transit.
6. Key Benefits of Disk Encryption
In this article, we’ve discussed a few benefits of disk encryption already. However, for more emphasis, we’ve listed 5 key benefits of disk encryption below.
1. Disk encryption ensures that your data is safe if you ever lose your devices.
2. It ensures you comply with standard industry regulations.
3. It eliminates the risk of human error.
4. It eliminates the risk of data leaks.
5. It saves you from non-compliance penalties.
6. It saves time.
Cybercriminals are unrelenting in their efforts to hack into your system and steal your data. They’ll exploit any loophole they find in your system. Disk encryption will ensure you’re well-protected, save you from headaches, and give you peace of mind.
NW Techs is one of America’s leading cybersecurity protection and advisory service providers to small and medium businesses, especially in the finance, legal, and marketing industries. We have well over a decade of experience in data encryption, cybersecurity mitigation, and remediation services.
Our cybersecurity managed IT, and business voice services will safeguard all your operations and prevent any setbacks. We’ll work with you to ensure you’re always ahead of hackers. Need the best data encryption available today? Reach out to any of our experts now!