Your company collects all types of personal and financial information on customers and employees. Names, addresses, telephone numbers, credit card and other payment information of customers, tax file numbers of employees and more are all hidden away in files and documents your company maintains.

You have an obligation to protect this information from misuse and abuse.

Establish Privacy Policies

Write a clear company policy on confidential information. Let your staff know what security measures need to be adhered to when sending, receiving, and storing documents with confidential personal information.

Convert Your Documents

Convert your paper files to online documents. You can achieve much more security over electronic documents than paper files. If you’re just starting, Adobe Acrobat and a scanner are useful tools to create PDF files from your paper files. Larger organizations and corporations typically use some type of enterprise content management solution.

Set up a secure password-protected set of files and folders for your documents. Just as you would organise your paper files, you have to establish a coherent structure for your digital documents.

Once your documents are converted, employ a document shredding services to destroy old paper files and other media that might contain sensitive information.

Remote Employees

If you have remote workers, ensure they do not use public or unsecured Wi-Fi. If you don’t supply their connection to your secure systems, ensure they do not log in from their local coffee shop. Insist they use a VPN that masks their online identity and encrypts their online connection.

The remote worker may also be exposed to sensitive personal information and documents. You need to have a strategy that details how remote employees deal with sensitive documents, contracts, and financial and personal information.

Password Policy

Review your password policy for login and remote login. Strengthen it to help prevent data breaches. As of 2020, 67% of data breaches resulted from stolen or weak passwords, human error and social attacks.

Your policy should minimize the chances of a data breach by requiring strong passwords, regular updates of passwords, and using multi-factor identification tools, like Google Authenticator, Authy, or Apple 2FA.

Rights Management Tool

A rights management tool will allow you to limit the access of confidential information to only specific persons. Not everyone in your organization needs access to sensitive information. For example, your shipping department may need access to customer names and addresses, but not credit or payment information.

Microsoft has a built-in set of tools called Azure Rights Management, which includes encryption, identity, and authorization policies.


Your organization can suffer severe financial and reputational risks from improperly managed documents. Government regulations are changing and becoming stricter with harsher penalties. One of the biggest proposed changes is to include small businesses under the Privacy Act. Previously the threshold of compliance was $3 million in turnover.

The interest in and demand for data and document security solutions is growing. As more and more business moves to the Internet and the cloud, and even new types of information become available, such as facial recognition, and digital voice ID, the more imperative it becomes to find and implement document security protocols.