Determining the Value of Information

Glenn King

Knowledge is power, we’ve all heard the phrase. The data your system provides is valuable, the trick is how to decide how and when to safeguard that information. If your data is not accessible when it is needed, that may lessen the benefits available to you.

Security requirements vary wildly depending on the platform. Social media accounts usually have the lowest security measures, because the information revealed has a fairly low risk of being misused by others. Pictures of family and pets or what you had for dinner last night, the threshold of misuse for this information is practically nil. On the other hand, your financial accounts require the most rigid security measures. To have your banking or credit accounts exposed to others could have catastrophic consequences.

Risk versus Value

Not all information is created equal. Some data has a higher value and therefore, more risk factors. Being able to segregate this information for minimal access, while sharing other data to the general population is essential. The system that you implement needs to be able to do both with ease.

The value of information is often determined by committee when in the context of a municipal application. The importance of information is very subjective and many times the IT department takes the conservative approach of “locking it all down.” This approach is usually due to the fact that they have no means of sharing certain process data without opening access to all data.

The benefits of sharing certain information can far outweigh the risks involved. Today there are cloud based solutions that can segregate sensitive information from information without “locking it all down.” These solutions have the ability to easily and securely pass on only certain information that is beneficial to others. Information exposure is a risk/reward decision. Usually the biggest fear is the possibility of someone intercepting the information and using it with malicious intent. Risk assessment is obviously a large part of security assessment.

Similar to banking sites, the Data-Command’s Cloud based solution, the Info-Portal, utilizes firewalls, Secure Socket Layer certificates, and multi-factor authentication to secure your data. But you can also personalize who else can see it, like a social media account. By adding users, tailoring their permissions, and customizing trends and reports, you can actually increase the value of your data by making it securely available exactly when and where it is needed.

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