Is Your Data Safe When You Outsource?
July 3, 2011
In an article about the safety of data while outsourcing, CEO of payroll solution vendor Acrede Global Solutions, Karen Paterson highlights some standard practices that need to be followed under these conditions.
It is important set your guidelines for data transfer ahead of time, before you decide to outsource. Information regarding employee data must be kept as confidential as possible. For most transactions, there is no reason to transfer such material to outsourcing firms. As an example, in Europe an employee’s data cannot be legally transferred from France to Italy. In cases when this needs to be done, there should be strict limits on how this information may be shared.
First of all, applications require passwords up to 12 characters long, including symbols alpha, and numeric. It should also be encrypted so that developers are not able to see the data. As a safe bet, these passwords should also be modified every quarter or three months. As an additional way to protect data, software requires certificates and a log to trail its processes. This leaves an imprint of every user and transaction the software has undergone.
In addition, it is also important to have dual signatures on authorization paperwork. This ensures that nothing slips by one manager and gives another the ability to catch errors. Moreover, it is also important to have site checks to ensure that your company guidelines are followed as you had initially stated and signed in your outsourcing agreement. For big name firms, nearshoring options to Mexico and Latin America might be an ideal choice since it reduces travel time. There is also a trend away from the traditional offshore model to India and China, with the introduction of closer markets in Europe and Latin America.
Furthermore, adherence to protocol is a must when it comes to outsourcing, particularly nearshoring.