The cybersecurity landscape today is not easy to navigate, especially where email is concerned. Not only is email the leading form of communication for businesses, but it has become a hub for important business data such as financial reports, intellectual property, and personally identifiable information.
Hardly a day goes by without local or national news covering a new phishing scam or a data breach that affects small businesses and government entities. Those incidents can inflict significant damage on your clients’ finances and reputation. According to the 2019 Cost of a Data Breach Report, the average data breach costs organizations $3.92 million and provides cybercriminals with access to approximately 25,575 records. As it turns out, phishing is the number one cause of those incidents, highlighting the importance of boosting your clients’ digital defenses.
One of the best and most effective forms of email security is encryption. These solutions allow your clients to easily protect the sensitive information their employees (and management team members) send and receive without worrying about it ending up in the wrong hands. Encryption makes it virtually impossible for anyone who might intercept or errantly receive the message to read the content or access any attachments. Only the intended recipient with the key can open and retrieve that information.
While it’s easy to argue that everyone should use email encryption, we know many still haven’t implemented these protection measures ̶ including organizations mandated to implement these types of solutions. Here are five of the top opportunity areas for MSPs to sell and support these applications:
Hospitals, family physicians, dentists, and yes, even funeral directors have access to a plethora of patient data. Encryption is not only helpful but a requirement. HIPAA (the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act) mandates that healthcare professionals must implement an maintain advanced security measures to ensure the protection of patient information. Providers that fail to uphold patient privacy and either lose or compromise that data are being held accountable today, with fines approaching $50,000 for sending non-complaint email messages. MSPs are also being held liable for not protecting records and following HIPAA rules for compliance. Implementing email encryption and filtering solutions helps ensure that your clients’ incoming and outgoing messages cannot end up in the wrong hands.
Lawyers also have access to highly sensitive client data, including banking and financial reports, hospital records, and other personally identifiable information. Email is becoming more prevalent in exchanging legal and personal information with customers, and, according to the Harvard Journal of Law & Technology, the cyberattackers are increasingly targeting law firms to gain access to that high-value data. Imagine if an attorney at one of your client firms were to send a message to the wrong person and accidentally divulge sensitive personal or case-specific information. The ramifications for everyone involved could be serious, possibly endangering their chances of winning a significant lawsuit or their ability to keep clients out of jail. Encryption can prevent situations like this since only the person with the correct key or login can access information in an email.
Similar to how HIPAA ensures medical practices are accountable for customer information, financial companies must adhere to the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act (GLBA). This law requires financial institutions to notify their customers specifically how their information is protected and shared, as well as provide them with a method to “opt-out.” GLBA also specifies a methodology and timelines for notifying clients of a data breach with fines up to $100,000 for failing to adhere to those guidelines.
That’s just one of the many compliance concerns for those firms. Your clients may also need to adhere to FINRA (Financial Industry Regulatory Authority), which regulates brokerage firms and exchange markets and provides specific protections for email messages. Financial institutions must maintain electronic messages and ensure they are readily accessible for a minimum of three years. Another FINRA security requirement is ensuring every device and management system is properly protected — another valued service that MSPs can provide their financial industry clients.
Any institution that receives backing from the Department of Education is subject to FERPA (the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act). This act ensures the parents’ right to educational records and gives them control over the disclosure of that data. The divulging of information to the wrong party could lead to some significant penalties, including access to federal funding, a major blow to any college or trade school. With teachers and support staff using email as a primary communication tool, especially with the growth of online education, mistakes such as sending information to the wrong address are rising. Implementing encryption solutions for these clients can reduce their risk profile.
5. Anyone Who Shares Important Information
While all the organizations mentioned above have numerous reasons for using email encryption (including regulatory requirements and industry standards), it has become essential for most, if not every business today. From sending contracts to collaboration partners or forwarding passwords to a coworker, the amount of sensitive data passing through your client’s email that must be protected is rising exponentially.
With easy options like Mailprotector’s Bracket email encryption solution, you can ensure your clients have the tools they need to meet various industry and regulatory compliance requirements. No hassle. Just a solution to their problems that’s so easy; they’ll actually use it and make everyone’s data more secure.