Getting ahead of changes to IT privacy and security laws

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We have often written in our newsletters about the need to improve IT security. Security should be a central consideration for all device users and business owners. Generally we talk about IT security in terms of the nuts and bolts of what good security practices entail in a technical sense. And all of that advice still stands:

  • Improved network security
  • Security of file servers
  • Strong backup strategies for data
  • Security of user systems
  • Active monitoring and protection for malware and other system attacks
  • Improved access control via 2FA, password management, etc
  • Increased security awareness and mitigation for remote workers

But another aspect of IT security to consider is the evolving legal and governmental obligations regarding keeping your own and others data safe. High profile IT security incidents in Australia over the past few years have meant that federal and state governments are looking at this area with a view to tightening and improving IT security regulations and obligations.

One of the changes that seems inevitable is the removal or weakening of exceptions that small businesses have previously had to existing law in this area. These legislative changes are still under consideration, but it seems probable that change will occur, and so it is more vital than ever to make sure that your IT security is best practice.

We are IT providers, not lawyers, so can’t offer you advice about these likely regulatory changes. But the likely solution won’t change, it will still all be about improving your security practices. This is something Mac Aid can help you with.

Areas that seem likely to be legislated include:

  • Informed consent for keeping customer data
  • Stronger protections around data relating to children
  • Obligations to delete data when a customer relationship ends
  • Tighter regulation around employee records
  • Notification of security breaches to stakeholders and government

A point of contention in discussion of privacy changes is the compliance burden of these changes for small business. A solid IT Security strategy won’t absolve you of these obligations or costs for your business. But it is logical that the best way to avoid expensive problems is by making sure that your IT security is best practice and so minimise the chance of breaches.

Talk to Mac Aid about the IT security stance of your business and what positive steps we can help you with to improve your preparedness.

This article from the Victorian Chamber of Commerce gives a good overview of the current state of affairs.