Why Secure Communication is Essential for Business Success

There’s a lot to do when starting a new business, and communication is crucial. Communication requires more than asking questions and addressing answers; with more businesses communicating digitally, you must be sure the communication channel can ensure you have a secure email outlet.

We cannot overlook the risks of leaked data when utilizing digital messaging. According to a recent IBM survey, US firms in 2022 took an average of 277 days (around nine months) to recognize and contain data leaks. Reducing that process to under 200 days would have saved companies roughly $1.12 million. Imagine the impact on cost savings if the company's email security software was already in place before these significant data losses. Ultimately, a secure communication system is no longer optional but imperative. 

This article discusses why secure communication is non-negotiable, what makes business communication safe, and how to secure business email to foster safety and success for your organization. 

What Makes Business Communication Secure?

Digital communication is not secure unless it fulfills four principles: encryption, authentication, integrity, and non-repudiation.

Businesses should send messages with end-to-end encryption. Encryption algorithms and network sniffing tools can authenticate users, protecting against attackers who could intercept the communication. Email security checks like digital certificates and biometric identification can be used to prove authenticity.

The integrity of a communication refers to whether or not it has been tampered with or modified and the receiver being confident in the trustworthiness of the sender and the communication itself. Digital signatures, message authentication codes, and data hashing can manage a communication’s integrity and prevent new email leaks.

Non-repudiation means that the sender of a message/transaction cannot deny they have sent it after the recipient receives the message. It refers to evidence that the communication exists, once again, through digital signatures, message authentication codes, and timestamps.

It is valuable to note a couple of comprehensive email security tools that drive communication security. Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) and TLS (Transport Layer Security) encrypt communications between clients (browsers) and servers (websites/ applications) to protect the authenticity and integrity of the sender. Of the two, TLS is the newer and better-regarded encryption resource. Furthermore, Pretty Good Privacy (PGP) tackles the encryption/decryption of emails over the Internet, while Virtual Private Networks (VPNs) are fast becoming another major player. VPNs are commonly used because they connect remote users to a private network, avoiding shared public networks. A VPN boasts built-in security features for authentication and data privacy. Such resources are valuable in maintaining company email security and preventing the development of further email security issues.

Email Security: A Critical Component of Secure Business Communications

Email is at the top of the list of all forms of communication that need protection due to its ubiquity in the business world. When professionals contact each other, it’s most often via email services. To that end, no professional body can risk an insecure email system. The danger of malicious attacks is too great – whether through malware, phishing, or data leaks. Businesses should educate email users on the best practices for email security. Workers should be able to distinguish between an innocent email and a phishing attack. They should be using strong passwords and frequently changing them as well.

Beyond this, all emails must be encrypted between the sender and the recipient. Having a secure login for an email server is also essential. Even more, safeguards against human error must be provided by email protection software capable of detecting and blocking all malicious mail before it reaches the recipient.

Why Is Secure Communication a Non-Negotiable?

Email protection is vital to prevent the aforementioned email security breaches. Here are eight reasons why email security should be a top priority:

Protecting Sensitive Information

A secure web email is non-negotiable to protect sensitive business and customer information, from financial details to trade secrets and customer contact information to personal particulars. In an era when data is incredibly valuable, data leaks are embarrassing and harmful and could halt a company’s operations and destroy its reputation. If you are in any doubt about that, consider how the average cost of a data breach in the United States in 2022 was a staggering $9.44 million, according to a report by IBM. Moreover, it takes a US company an average of 80 days to contain a breach but 287 to identify the violation. Therefore, email security is vital when considering the data loss prevention that could result.

Building Trust & Reputation

In less stark terms, ensuring sensitive information does not fall into the wrong hands reaps significant benefits because it establishes and maintains trust with customers by letting them know their data is safe. Secure communications, therefore, help a business build, support, and control its reputation. The onus is on security companies to make it known any organization can trust them, and the best approach is to be up-front, honest, and positive. For instance, many companies dedicate website pages to providing customers with real-time data on security performance and their commitment to compliance. Also, they highlight how they incorporate security into testing, staff, and development, showing that email security is a company value.

Meeting Regulatory & Compliance Requirements

On the other side is insecure communications, which might restrict business activity and invoke fines, penalties, and even legal action due to non-compliance. As the digital age progresses, compliance with handling data is ever-growing and evolving. As a result, when comparing modern technology with more traditional methods, answers to questions such as “Is VoIP better than landline?” often mention compliance standards as a benefit of current practices. 

Businesses must reassure customers they can trust them with compliance. Many companies will list certifications, standards, and regulations, including GDPR, FedRAMP, HIPAA, PCI, DSS, and ISO 27001. Companies often state their desire to educate and comply with changing data privacy laws. It’s a decisive move to build trust, attract customers, and get ahead of the pack.

Mitigating Financial & Legal Risks

Protecting their company from the financial and legal risks outlined above is essential for business owners; they can’t afford to expose themselves to lost customers or lawsuits. Investing in multi-tiered email security, anti-phishing, spyware and malware protection tools, employee education, and VPNs will pay off in the long run. After all, according to IBM, ransomware-caused data breach shot up by 41% last year, meaning it took 49 days longer to identify and contain them.

Enabling Efficient Cooperation

Safe digital communication can nurture collaboration between team members, departments, and partners. Anything that drives improved processes, resulting in happier, more efficient staff, will benefit the company significantly. Many businesses turn to phone systems to develop clear and efficient communication while remaining secure. Various techniques will suit different needs. Vonage provides resources to find other telephone systems that suit your company's needs. Also, remember that malware attacks will ensue if you don’t choose digital collaboration tools wisely. It’s critical to select devices with built-in encryption and security features.

Safeguarding Intellectual Property

When using digital communication, it’s not just private customer data a business must make secure. It must also consider its sensitive information—especially its intellectual property (IP). So, it is imperative that patents, trademarks, and copyrights of intellectual property remain safely out of the clutches of malicious third parties, let alone competitors. To safeguard its IP, a business should deploy secure communication tools and roll out security-focused protocols, such as the principle of least privilege (where a system is only provided the resources it absolutely needs to function).

Enhancing Customer Confidence

Keep the customer satisfied. Make your prospective customers and clients aware they can trust your company not to leak privileged information. Examples include “informed consent” (allowing certain interactions once aware of the facts and the risks of performing such actions). In time, customer confidence will inevitably contribute to customer satisfaction, increasing customer loyalty and revenue.

Adapting to Evolving Threats

Finally, no business leader can ever rest on their accomplishments, as they need to ensure their communication services remain secure. Unfortunately, the landscape of cyber threats is ever-changing. Malware ransomware technology is becoming ever-more capable, which means the cyber security tools and technology designed to combat them must also improve. Business leaders must keep up with the latest best practices and market trends, such as open-source email protection, or else they could find themselves on the wrong end of nasty, costly email security breaches.

Final Thoughts: Can A Business Succeed Without Secure Communication?

In today’s digital-driven world, it’s undoubtedly difficult to convincingly argue that any company can be without secure communications. Due to its flexible functionality, email is quickly replacing the telephone as the primary communication tool for companies, which means protecting sensitive information in emails is essential.

Years ago, an undisputed priority for a business owner would have been sorting out a phone system before the operations began. These days, the focus is on selecting the exemplary email service that guarantees the best email security.

It doesn’t end there, however. Once a business has secure communications, it must be vigilant in the face of cyber threats by updating email security tools accordingly. That means keeping up with the latest trends in secure communications, avoiding the top email security mistakes, and researching cybersecurity in general and how to prevent encountering more email security threats.

To sum it up, communication security is no longer an optional idea to achieve business success; it is essential. Keep learning about securing email communications by exploring the resources below:

  • Implementing comprehensive email security software can help prevent advanced threats, such as targeted spear phishing and ransomware. 
  • Following these best practices, you can also improve your email security posture to protect against attacks.
  • Keep the integrity of your email safe by securing the cloud with spam filtering and enterprise-grade anti-spam services.
  • Get the latest updates on how to stay safe online.

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