6 ways that a focus on data security can safeguard your association’s future

When you have a small staff, you might find that data security falls to the bottom of your list.

Here’s why it’s time to make data security a priority.

Data security is a hot topic these days. It seems like a day doesn’t go by without a news story about data security breaches or data privacy regulations.

And data security is important to members, too. An association industry study from Community Brands shows that 71 percent of association members say they worry about data privacy and security.

You probably know that data security is something you should be addressing for your association. At the same time, when you have a small staff and time is tight, you might find that data security falls to the bottom of your list.

But keep in mind that in today’s digital world, your association handles a lot of sensitive data. Securing your data helps you to protect your association in multiple ways.

Let’s look at six ways that focusing on data security can help safeguard your association:

Preserving member trust

Your association’s reputation depends on trust. A breach or compromise of your member data can lead to a loss of confidence in your organization, which can eventually damage your association’s reputation and result in member attrition. By prioritizing data security, your association can demonstrate commitment to member trust and preserve the foundation of your success.

TIP: Let your members know once you have data privacy and security standards and precautions in place. Explain how the information you collect will be secured and used for a better and more personalized member experience, and your members in turn are more likely to trust you. That trust will then translate into a better member experience and, ultimately, greater member loyalty.

Complying with regulations

To protect your association, it’s important to comply with laws and regulations, such as the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) in the European Union and the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) in the United States. Failure to comply with these regulations can result in severe penalties and legal consequences.

Minimizing cybersecurity risks

Cyber threats are continually evolving. From phishing attacks and malware infections to ransomware and data breaches, cyberattacks can be highly destructive. Robust data security measures, including regular vulnerability assessments, strong firewalls, employee training, and using software that includes multiple security features, can significantly reduce these risks and help ensure that your association’s valuable data remains protected from threats.

TIP: YourMembership by Community Brands values security and helps you keep your member data safe in multiple ways. For example, YourMembership AMS is PCI compliant and enables organizations to meet data privacy regulations, such as GDPR. YourMembership AMSals follows password best practices, including using password standards and prompting your administrators to reset their passwords every 90 days. It also has built-in multi-factor authentication functionality, which is one of the most effective methods to prevent unauthorized account access and safeguard your members’ data.

Ensuring continuity of operations

Data security is about more than just protecting sensitive information (which is important enough!). It’s also about ensuring the continuity of your organization’s operations. A successful cyberattack or data breach can disrupt your association’s day-to-day activities, which in turn interrupts member services, communications, and operational efficiency.

Protecting intellectual property

If your association is like many others, you generate and manage valuable intellectual property, including research findings, proprietary methodologies, and industry insights. Protecting these assets is essential for you to continue to deliver unique value to members while maintaining your organization’s reputation in the industry.

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Taking the first steps with data security might seem daunting when you have a small staff. But it’s well worth the effort to help protect your association. And with some best practices and modern technology, data security is well within reach for your organization.

Learn tips and insights for securing your association’s data: Read the guide, Getting Started with Data Security for Your Association


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