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The Importance of Encryption and Access Controls


Data encryption is a vital component of any security-conscious organization. It converts plaintext (readable information) into a non-readable code called ciphertext so that only those with the correct key can decrypt it back to its original format. This is also required by regulators in industries like healthcare and financial services.

In a world of mobile devices, where the data you share via social media, transmit through chat apps and save in emails is constantly shifting between servers and devices, encryption protects the integrity of your data. It also stops prying eyes from accessing your private information or business secrets, assisting you comply with regulations and mitigate cybersecurity risks.

The use of encryption can also be used to secure data stored in fixed locations, such as a USB stick or hard drive. This is beneficial when the data could be stolen by non-authorized individuals. Encryption, when utilized in conjunction other security functions like authentication, will ensure that even malware or malicious insiders gain access to data, they will not be able to access or read it.

No matter how effective your encryption algorithm, it’s only dependent on the security controls that determine who can and cannot view the encrypted code. This is referred to as security control or access control. Insisting too much on this aspect of security could compromise the confidentiality and integrity of your data if you give the wrong people access to the keys that allow access to it.

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