Inbox Insider: E-mail leaks can challenge businesses

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E-mail is one of the most important tools of communication for companies, but security risks can make using the channel a challenge. As we saw with the Twitter hack last month, sensitive information in circulating via e-mail and if this is hacked can leave a company's private plans exposed. In addition, a company can be at risk if their customer's private data becomes exposed.

According to a new report by e-mail security company Proofpoint, 43% of US companies investigated a suspected e-mail leak of confidential or proprietary information in the past 12 months and 34% investigated a suspected violation of privacy or data protection regulations in the past 12 months.

This is a big deal when it comes to consumer data, which is not always secure, though legally is has to be. According to the Proofpoint study, 33% said they had been impacted by improper exposure or theft of customer information.

Considering the proprietary information that is sent within e-mail, it is important that information within e-mails stays private to an organization. But sometimes proprietary information is being taken from e-mails to social networks. While marketers recognize the power of spreading e-mail content through social networks, some businesses are having proprietary information leaked onto these networks. According to the study, 18% of US companies investigated the exposure of confidential, sensitive or private information via video or audio media

posted to a media sharing site such as YouTube or Vimeo and 18% of US companies surveyed investigated the exposure of confidential, sensitive or private information via a blog or message board posting.

As we become more online centric it is important for organizations to set boundaries about what kind of information can be shared. In addition, in these times, it is more important than ever to make sure that data is secure and will not be hacked into, particularly when it comes to consumer data.

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