Why Is Database Security Essential to Businesses Today

Author : Alisha | July 24, 2023

Every nation makes significant investments in border security. Why? — To protect their nation against terrorism, criminal activity, and threats to fundamental security. We must protect databases similarly from malware, cyberattacks, and data breaches.

Our data is an important resource that has to be treated and maintained with the same care as any other type of economic resource. As a result, it is important to maintain the privacy and security of any commercial data that may be tactically important to the specific organization.

What Is Database Security?

A database security system is a group of measures that organizations like yours used to ensure that they secured their databases from both internal and external threats. Database security includes protection for all the programs that access it, the database management system, and the data it stores. Organizations must safeguard their databases against malicious attacks, including cybersecurity hazards, as well as from people who have access to the databases abusing the information and databases.

The past several years have seen an increase in the frequency of data breaches. Aside from the serious damage these risks inflict on a company's reputation and customer base, businesses are also being compelled to abide by an expanding number of rules and penalties for data breaches, such as those in the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), some of which are quite pricey. An efficient database security system is essential for upholding compliance, protecting your reputation, and keeping consumers.

Understanding Data Security and GDPR

Applications can reduce the exposure of sensitive data by using data redaction, data subsetting, and data masking techniques. In order to comply with the requirements for anonymization and pseudonymization set forth by regulations like the EU GDPR, these technologies are crucial.

They built the European Union GDPR on well-known and broadly accepted privacy principles, including purpose limitation, lawfulness, transparency, integrity, and secrecy. It strengthens current privacy and security requirements, such as those for notice and consent, technical and practical security protections, and systems for cross-border data transit. In order to accommodate the new digital, international, and data-driven economy, the GDPR also formalizes new privacy concepts, including accountability and data minimization.

They can fine companies up to 4% of their annual global sales or €20 million, whichever is greater, under the General Data Protection Regulation for data breaches (GDPR). Businesses that collect data in the EU are required to manage their data handling processes to adhere to the following standards:

  • Data Security: Businesses need a sufficient level of security, which comprises organizational and technical security measures, to stop data loss, information breaches, and other illicit data processing activities. The GDPR encourages companies to include encryption, incident management, and standards for network and system integrity, availability, and resilience in their security programs.
  • Extended rights of individuals: People now have more ownership and control over their own data. They also have access to a broader set of data protection rights, including the right to data portability and the right to be forgotten.
  • Data breach notification: When a business notices a data breach and the exposure of personal information, it is required to notify the authorities and/or the affected parties right away.
  • Security audits: Companies will have to document and maintain a record of their security protocols, evaluate the effectiveness of their security program, and take corrective action as necessary.

Understanding Data Security and HIPPA

Data security is now more important than ever because of the increased use and interchange of electronic patient data. In order to deliver high-quality care, healthcare organizations must now handle this growing demand for data while abiding by HIPAA regulations and protecting patient healthcare information.

Whether you are a Covered Entity (CE) or a Business Affiliate (BA), any company working with Protected Health Information (PHI) should have all the physical, network, and procedural security measures necessary to assure compliance with HIPAA rules. A public health clinic in Denver was required to pay a $400,000 HIPAA breach penalty after compromising 3200 patients' data during a phishing attempt. A compliance program could have easily avoided this which includes training for staff members on cyber security awareness.

HIPAA violations are expensive. The fines for noncompliance can range from $100 to $50,000 for each infringement (or per record), with a maximum consequence of $1.5 million per year for violations of the same provision, depending on the level of recklessness. Prison term could also result from criminal charges for infractions.

The number of patients and level of negligence will determine how much the fines increase. Starting with a breach when you were unaware of the infraction and, with due diligence, would not have been the lowest penalties apply. On the other end of the scale, they impose fines when a violation is the consequence of negligence and non-rectification within 30 days. In legalese, we know this as mens rea (state of mind). As a result, penalties get more severe as they progress from no mens rea (didn't know) to inferred mens rea (willful neglect).

The two primary categories into which they divide the fines and charges are Reasonable Cause and Willful Neglect. Reasonable Cause can range from $100 to $50,000 per event and carries no mandatory prison sentence. The penalties for deliberate neglect range from $10,000 to $50,000, depending on the specific situation.

Database Security Solutions

Data breach risks can be reduced, and compliance can be simpler, by using data security best-practices such as encryption, key management, data masking, privileged user access limits, activity monitoring, and audits.

  • Data protection: Encryption, key management, redaction, and masking are just a few solutions that help reduce the risk of a data breach and non-compliance.
  • Data access control: A database system's security depends on confirming a user's identity when they access a database (authentication) and limiting the actions they can perform (authorization). Strong authentication and authorization methods help secure data from hackers. Guaranteeing role separation helps deter malicious or unintended database modifications and privileged persons from misusing their access to sensitive data.
  • Auditing and monitoring: They should record all database activities for auditing purposes. This encompasses both behavior that originates within databases (often through direct login) and activities that happen over networks, eliminating the need for network monitoring. Auditing should continue to work even in encrypted networks. Databases must provide robust and comprehensive auditing that considers the data's characteristics, the client making the request, the details of the operation, and the SQL statement itself.
  • Securing databases in the cloud: Installations of cloud databases can reduce costs, free up personnel for more important duties, and promote a more responsive and adaptable IT organization. These benefits, however, might accompany by additional drawbacks, such as a shared infrastructure, a larger danger surface, and an unknown administration group. Yet, if the relevant database security best practices are implemented, the cloud can provide more security than what most businesses have on-premises while simultaneously cutting costs and boosting agility. Database security is one of the most urgent problems facing the modern data management industry. You can decrease the multiple, growing dangers to database security by implementing many of the above tactics. There are even entire systems that use many of these techniques to improve database security.
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