UK Councils Need to Improve Digital Security
Local councils across the UK are being warned to prepare themselves for a digital attack after a series of reports described 2011 as the year of security breaches. As private personal details, patient records and sensitive corporate data increasingly find their way onto the internet, a 2011 government report estimates the cost of UK digital crime to be in the region of £27bn with a loss of £2.2bn experienced by the government sector alone.
This situation contrasts with the government’s call for public services to be delivered “digitally by default”, giving councils the incentive to hold and manage greater amounts of data electronically. The concern is that systems currently in operation are not designed to cope with the new wave of attacks, as authorities move towards offering more online services and make increasing use of shared networked resources.
Systems need to be designed with security in mind and supported by a range of measures. Among steps mentioned are:
- Elevating security to board level to ensure risks and impact become the responsibility of the whole management team.
- Reviewing and controlling access to important systems and documents, as well as connections to new systems.
- Making sure staff are aware of the risks and procedures in dealing with valuable assets and that software ensures adherence to council policies.
- Establishing best practices and working closely with suppliers and other departments to ensure the security culture extends beyond the bounds of the authority.
In the area of document management, Data Capture Solutions Ltd (DCS) have worked with over 50 local authorities to enable conversion of information held in paper documents to digital format. Confidential documents such as application forms, invoices, tenancy agreements and financial statements are stored securely in an electronic repository – FileStore EDM – the award-winning document management system from DCS.
The DCS document management system is robust and enables local authorities to protect their document-based data with high levels of auditable user access control. Managers can apply a wide range of user permissions and access rights at folder and document level and the technology automatically generates granular audit trail logs detailing who has accessed documents held on the system and what actions they performed.
If you would like to find out more about the benefits of capturing, storing and managing documents electronically, why not take a moment to speak to one of our business consultants on 01753 616 720? Alternatively, send your enquiry by email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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