Data encryption has proven to be an effective source of protecting sensitive data from being stolen or manipulated by unauthorized entities. According to latest report released by WinMagic Data Security (n.d.), there are certain myths and misconceptions that are found in peoples’ minds. (McNickle, 2012) Let’s debunk them!
Data encryption is a way to make data unreadable for unauthorized people. This can be done on software and on hardware level. In recent years phone manufacturers have built in both of these types of encryption. Even though it is providing very effective services to companies by safely storing their data, some misconceptions about them are there even in the minds of people who are computer literate. (McNickle, 2012) Here are some misconceptions that are prevalent about encryption.
Passwords by default protect your data on laptops and desktops
Typically, people think that when they have username and password on their laptops, it is more than enough security measure they have taken to ensure security of their data. However, what if they lost their laptop or it is stolen, would they be still be sure about it? It is not difficult to remove a hard drive from a laptop and gain access to the data by the miscreants. Therefore, a strong data protection mechanism is required that encrypts the whole disk or the sensitive parts to make your data safe and inaccessible to unauthorized entities. (WINMAGIC, n.d.)
Encryption slows down your computing process and processing by a lot
This is partially true. Years ago when encryption wasn’t common in household items, encryption slowed down computers and phones. Once you complete the initial process of encrypting your device, your device will work as it was working before without any obvious impairment in its performance whatsoever. Your laptop’s performance will not lag, because most laptops have hardware or firmware encryption features nowadays (something to look out for when buying a new device). (Encryption myths and realities, 2016)
Data encryption solutions implementation are a headache for IT
In organizations with large number of employees, various processes of data encryption such as, planning, deploying, implementing and maintenance can become a major challenge. However, through a well-designed data encryption solution, managing of the whole process could/should be easy. It can be done by providing management consoles where the administrators can manage every step of data encryption solution and ensure consistency in meeting the highest standard of corporate and regulatory policies. (WINMAGIC, n.d.)
Encryption Solutions Are Too Expensive
The extra you pay for a device that features hardware/firmware encryption could be significant, but the economic loss that will occur in case of a device breach is far more expensive than this. According to Ponemon Institute, which conducted survey on 329 private and public sector organizations in US, data encryption is believed to save organizations $20,000 per laptop, on average. This is a huge amount. (McNickle, 2012)
These are some of the myths that are found among computer literate and computer illiterate population alike. Data encryption is one of the most effective ways to protect your data. Many people consider data encryption solutions to be expensive but it’s a fact that the data you lose in case of theft or data leakage, hacking, etc. costs you much more and the damage can be irreversible that can not only hit you economically, but also can damage your reputation among your costumers.
Encryption myths and realiities. (2016, May 16). Retrieved February 22, 2018, from University of Alberta: https://ist.ualberta.ca/blog/security/encryption-myths-and-realities
McNickle, M. (2012, May 14). 7 common myths about data encryption. Retrieved February 17, 2018, from Healthcare IT News: http://www.healthcareitnews.com/news/7-common-myths-about-data-encryption
WINMAGIC. (n.d.). Data Encryption Demystified. Retrieved February 22, 2018, from WINMAGIC DATA SECURITY: https://www.winmagic.com/resource-centre/white-papers/demystifying-data-encryption#Prevalent-encryption-myths-and-misconceptions