Security, Data and Intellectual Property Ethics
Sensitive data in the wrong hands is a potential crisis to any company. Read more about ethics training for employees with the aim of thinking securely…it may make or break the future of your business!
For many companies (particularly Fortune 500, military and public sector), the topic of security is an important inclusion in ethics training. Employee compliance with security measures is integral in protecting company resources, confidential and sensitive information, personal information and even the safety and well-being of fellow employees.
The security portion of ethics training teaches trainees that computer software and hardware are not the only targets of criminal activity – but hardcopy data, keys, badges and other tangible objects of interest, as well. Theft of such items may result in severe damage to the corporation, as well as significant criminal punishment for those involved.
Security Topics in Ethics Training
An effective module on security in corporate ethics training should cover several key topics, that involve the main types of security breaches, theft and other occurrences – and how employees may take the proper precautions to help eliminate the chances of them ever occurring.
- Behaving “securely”: Employees are encouraged to lock or secure any sensitive materials that are a part of their daily job function in the office. Whether this includes computer data or hardcopies – in the office, at home or on location – all efforts must be in place so that these materials do not wind up in the wrong hands. Employees are also reminded to log off of their computer system before leaving for the day. Otherwise, it is logged into the corporate network and subject to malicious activity.
- Unauthorized visitors: Many companies have strict guidelines as to who can or cannot have access to the office. Employees are urged precaution in letting outsiders enter the office from the building’s entrances, without having contacted the person he or she is expecting. Passwords and badges are never to be given out to anyone, as they are personal and for your usage, only. The purpose is to protect confidential company information and general well-being.
- Spotting potentially harmful situations: Employees should be trained to recognize problems stemming from co-workers and other affiliates using the office. These problems include anything from threats toward the company, its interests or its employees, unusual, harassing or aggressive behavior, mockery of the usage of weapons or violence, appearance of intoxication or drug use, and many other “red flags” that may or may not be immediately obvious. More obvious situations, including physical threats of violence, talk of vengeance, bomb threats and outbursts must be deal with quickly, and with the utmost care.
- Reporting: In these cases, employees must report all potentially harmful situations immediately. As in scenarios of harassment or breaches of code of conduct, reporting is the ultimate step that an employee should take. However, it is even more vital in these situations, when lives may be at stake. Employees should be aware of the proper security contacts for their building, as well as the proper time to dial 911, so that these services may be utilized when absolutely necessary.