What is business data?
Business data is all company-related information, such as sales figures, customer details, contacts and website traffic numbers. Essentially, company data is any information that we collect and store about organisations and people.
Other types of details that your firm might be storing include some of the following:
- Website analytics
- Strategic insights
- Customer contact information
- Customer trends and buying patterns
- Supply chain management information
- Future business ideas and trends
- Sales data
- Market, industry and competitor data
- Marketing campaigns
- Business and sales plans
- Emails to prospective clients
In fact, the information that your marketing and sales team likely uses will be classed as business data. Companies cannot operate without collecting some type of actual data on them as it ensures your operations run smoothly and effectively.
What is the importance of correctly storing business data?
As companies continue to expand and increase the technology used during basic tasks, the amount of information collected and stored only increases in your databases. All the details collected by your organisation help to make executive decisions, streamline marketing activities and complete business operations to ensure company growth.
Often, a lot of this information that businesses store is “personal data” and private customer details, meaning that all the data needs to be correctly held and secure in safe storage systems.
It is vital to have a strong storage solution with plenty of security measures in place so that you do not run into safety beaches in the future. Failure to take the correct precautions could lead to hefty fines or even a lawsuit.
With these rules in place, you must know the exact location of your data, how it is secured and if it is backed-up.
Where is my business data stored?
Businesses store data in various locations. Some details are stored in their office, others in a server placed outside their office premises. Here are some of the most common ways that companies store data:
- Cloud services
- Computers and desktops
- External hard drives
- On-premise servers
- 3rd party suppliers, contractors and consultants
Much of our data is now stored in the cloud. Information stored in the cloud can be recovered anywhere with an internet connection and by those who have access. No matter where you are or what device you are using, you can enter into the storage system and retrieve what you need.
Having cloud storage does not tie you down to one location, so there is no wonder why this is a popular way of holding data. Cloud services are especially beneficial if you have multiple offices or need company data anywhere in the world.
There are many different types of systems that use the cloud to operate. Types of technologies you may be familiar with are email, online databases and telephony. Basically, anything that is storing data online is called cloud-based storage. But if your data is kept online, do you know where your storage is being physically held?
Does it matter where my company data is stored?
There are many legal regulations, meaning that it is key for companies to know where their information is held. This means that businesses need to keep an eye on where their data is kept and how it is stored.
Depending on where your company data is stowed, you may be subject to different laws in various locations.
Governments are designing more strict data and consumer privacy regulations so that people have more control over how businesses capture and keep their information. Different governments have different rules, so here we analyse the laws your business needs to know about data protection.
What is GDPR?
The European Union’s General Data Protection Requirements (GDPR) lays out the rules of data capture, storage, usage and sharing for companies. GDPR regulation and compliance do not just matter for European countries – it’s a law applicable to any business that targets or collects the personal data of EU citizens.
Companies that ignore GDPR compliance and fail to uphold consumer privacy may face fines of up to 20 million euros or up to 4% of annual revenue, whichever is higher. That is a hefty price to pay for not storing your business, personal and customer data correctly.
What is the US equivalent of GDPR?
The US equivalent of the EU’s GDPR is the CCPA (California Consumer Privacy Act). The CCPA is a comprehensive data privacy act that gives California residents (which has also made it to the U.S in some states) greater transparency and control over how businesses collect and use consumer data. It is similar to EU regulation but GDPR is stricter and requires that users give their consent before having their personal data collected and processed. The CCPA consent is needed just for the data disclosure or selling to third parties.
Where should I be storing my business data?
Wherever you are choosing to store your corporate data, you need to ensure that it is safe, secure and protected. If you’re choosing to have your information in the cloud or on a hard drive, there should be no room for error when it comes to the potential of cyber security breaches.
Storing your business electronically holds many benefits and makes a lot of sense. From security to scalability and optimising space on physical premises, it’s clearly the most effective choice. A survey from Foundry showed that 69% of organisations have accelerated their cloud migration over the past 12 months, and the percentage of companies with most or all IT infrastructure in the cloud is expected to leap from 41% today to 63% in the next 18 months. This shows the importance of investing in cloud data storage.
Data security should be high on any business agenda, but with the different cloud infrastructures available, we highly recommend that you conduct heavy research and consider the options presented. The main point to consider is, do you know where your details are stored?
With there being so many cheap cloud services available, there are many issues that could arise from investing in cheap cloud storage that’s located in an unsecured location with few data guarding laws or enforcement. When you are considering cloud storage, really take time to research the storage placement and the law covering data protection.
The benefits of storing your data in the UK
For a UK business which processes personal data about EU individuals, the safest option is to ensure that the business data is stored on servers in the EU, or even better, in Great Britain. Companies that operate solely within the United Kingdom may benefit from having a cloud service that’s based in the UK.
At T2k, we provide a cloud-based phone system, 3CX, which you can install anywhere, be that in your own private cloud or another provider. You could even have it on your own site. This gives your business the ultimate reassurance that you know exactly where your phone system data is stored. You will feel assured that your phone system data is safely protected and your company stays in line with data security laws.
Need help with storing your business data? T2k are here to help
T2k has been helping many businesses with their company data for more than 25 years. Our expert advisors are here to help you find the most valuable data storage system for your company and we're here to assist you in finding the easiest, most beneficial technology for you and your employees. For a jargon-free conversation about data preservation, store systems and VoIP technology, contact T2K today.
Frequently Asked Questions
How can I stay in control of business data with cloud services?
Why is data necessary for my business?
Storing and collecting data helps businesses to make decisions in order to grow and thrive. It is essential to store business and customer data as it helps you to find new customers, increase customer retention and improve consumer service. Without data, your business operations will become unorganised and confusing.
How can my business stay better protected from data breaches?
There are some extra precautions that you can put in place to ensure that your systems are secure and protected from security breaches. A few different methods you can take to ensure your business stays compliant are the following: block ads and trackers, do not link your apps and use a VPN.
What is 3CX?
3CX is a software-based VoIP phone system that is hugely powerful, flexible, scalable and feature-rich. Perfect for businesses that require a customised solution, now you can build your own cloud. It is an affordable option for companies looking for more freedom than other hosted platforms provide. Reducing office phone bills while at the same time eliminating interoffice call charges. Find out more about the 3CX phone system here.