Data breaches seem to be a natural occurrence, which should be a situation for Baltimore rental property owners to worry about. When you lease a property, you bring together sensitive personal data from your tenants, which may find its way into the hands of identity thieves unless handled correctly. To protect your tenant’s sensitive information in today’s modern world, maybe you need advanced IT skills, or you’ll need to consider engaging with a property management company that does. Whatever the case may be, there are several things you need to conduct to make sure that your tenant’s personal information stays safe and secure.
1. Use Strong Passwords and Firewalls
Generally, the more random your passwords are, the less likely they’ll be hacked. Stop utilizing simple passwords that include words or easy-to-find number sequences (like a phone number). As a substitute, produce strong passwords for your Wi-Fi, computers, and cloud storage accounts. Avoid accessing tenant data while using unsecured Wi-Fi networks, such as those usually used in cafes, restaurants, and libraries. One more imperative security measure is to enable a firewall on your computer. A firewall will form a better barrier between hackers and your tenant’s sensitive data. In case you don’t have the knowledge on how to install one, get the help of an IT professional.
2. Prevent Malware
Together with a firewall, any computer you use to access tenant data needs to have anti-malware software installed on it. Anti-malware software can help deter hackers and identity thieves from obtaining the details they’re not supposed to get once they pass through the firewall. Cybercriminals will try to bypass your firewall by sending you links that will download malware onto your hard drive when you click on them. You may not even notice that you did that. Once installed, malware can be very problematic to remove and sometimes requires a specialist’s assistance to do so.
3. Take Privacy Seriously
You may need your tenant’s personal data for good reasons, but it is important to create a secure system to guarantee that you don’t accidentally violate their privacy. Whenever possible, stop keeping their social security numbers or credit card information in widely available places. Be very vigilant of any documents that may include your tenant’s personal information, like phone numbers and addresses, and shred any document you no longer need right away – don’t ever throw documents in the trash. Even the slightest act of negligence can lead to serious legal liabilities, especially if the privacy breach can be traced back to your information handling practices.
4. Call the Experts
With too much depending on your ability to secure your tenant’s sensitive information, it might be better and more practical to engage with professionals. Although you can establish and manage all of your own security measures, it is preferable and more cost-effective if you employ a property management company to perform all of the essential services you need. National property management firms like Real Property Management have the potential to deliver high-level security for both you and your tenants. Our information security extends beyond even the measures discussed in this post, ensuring that your tenant’s personal information remains safe and secure and gives you professional and friendly service.
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