Do you need to share documents both within and outside your organization, but you’re not comfortable giving permanent access to recipients? Here are just a few instances when you might want to restrict access:
● Prevent a document from getting into unauthorized hands.
● Securing confidential documents related to takeovers and mergers.
● Letting the recipient view important information for a limited period.
● Prohibiting ex-employees from viewing business-critical information.
Managing the lifecycle of electronic documents is a complex issue. Since the majority of documents are not intended to last forever, organizations want documents to be able to self-destruct at different times and in different ways, as per their requirements.
Digital Rights Management (DRM) has a valuable role to play in the electronic document lifecycle
management because it can enforce document retention periods and document expiry.
Digital Rights Management (DRM): The next level of document security
DRM is used by businesses to protect confidential data, securely share information with third parties, and track documents to provide an audit trail of use and identify information leaks. In short, DRM helps enterprises gain control over access, use, and distribution of content throughout any document’s life cycle.
For instance, if you pay $2.99 to download an ebook for your Kindle, it is protected by DRM that prevents you from sharing the contents. If Amazon wants, it can revoke your access to the eBook so you cannot read it anymore. A similar approach can be applied to your company’s confidential document protection. With DRM, you can make sure that confidential and sensitive documents are only shared with trusted parties such as authorized employees. DRM can be used to prevent access to unauthorized users and block authorized users from sharing sensitive and confidential documents with others.
Importance of Expiry in a document retention policy
One of the most effective ways to prevent data security breaches is by implementing an expiration policy on the DRM-protected data. A document DRM system will enable you to set an expiry date according to your business requirements, which will ensure access to all confidential and sensitive documents is stopped after the specified date and time.
Here are five ways setting an expiry date can take your document security to the next level:
1 Improves compliance
The 2017 Cost of Data Breach Study by Ponemon mentions compliance failures as one of the critical factors influencing data breach costs. Expiry is useful in controlling document access without manual intervention. It can ensure that all content is not used beyond a specific date or is only available during a particular period.
2 Prevents unauthorized access
One of the basic requirements of a critical business document is to self-destruct if it is being accessed from an unauthorized location. Unprotected and easily accessible documents are a potential opportunity for fraudsters and information thieves. A reliable data destruction policy protects your confidential information and reduces the risk of data security breaches.
3Reduces chances of human errors
Did you know that 28 percent of data breaches happen due to negligent employees or other human error? Expiring sensitive documents is one of the easiest ways to reduce employee-related errors. Using and automatically enforcing an expiry policy takes the decision out of employees’ hands as to whether or not documents containing sensitive information are still valid after a certain time period.
4 Encourages a culture of safety
A document retention policy that outlines expiration will support a culture of data security in your organization. For instance, an expiry date policy will help to fight complacency around document security, similar to how a Clean Desk Policy encourages employees to keep their desks clear of confidential information.
5Ensures legal compliance
Documents that include personally identifiable information (PII) should never be accessible to all employees. Unprotected or publicly available information could put your business in violation of data privacy laws that govern how confidential data is gathered, stored, and disposed of. It is crucial to check at both local and federal levels to make sure you comply.
With DRM, access can be locked forever, or limited to a specific duration. DRM also allows you to protect content in the following ways:
● Restrict users from editing, sharing, forwarding, printing and taking screenshots.
● Set an expiry date, after which the recipients will not be able to view the document.
● Restrict access to certain locations, IP addresses, and devices.
● Watermark documents to establish ownership and use.
All documents containing confidential and personal information should be securely stored, and destroyed when they are no longer needed. However, document expiry needs to be enforced at both the document and recipient level. It is common sense that businesses should do what it takes to safeguard their sensitive information, and implement reliable measures to address them.