The US National Cyber Security Alliance (NCSA) is reminding everyone to take care when it comes to managing personal information online, as it prepares to commemorate Data Privacy Day on January 28.
Data Privacy Day is an annual event founded in 2008 with the intention of promoting the importance of securely managing confidential data in order to mitigate the risk of cybercrime or identify theft.
This year's Data Privacy Day theme has been announced as "Respecting Privacy, Safeguarding Data and Enabling Trust", and the NCSA is planning a series of events across the USA to reinforce these ideals.
NCSA executive director Michael Kaiser says that any entity which collects the personal information of customers or clients has a distinct responsibility to take the vulnerability management steps necessary to protect the privacy of that information.
"Any company, government entity, organisation or individual that collects, processes and/or stores personal information should take all necessary steps to respect privacy and prevent data loss," said Mr Kaiser in a statement released December 18.
"January 28 is the culmination of our year long efforts to raise awareness and empower people to protect everyone's privacy and control their digital footprint and escalate the protection of privacy and data as everyone's priority."
The kick-off event for Data Privacy Day 2013 will be a special privacy forum hosted by the NCSA at the George Washington University Law School on January 28.
The keynote speaker will be US federal trade commissioner Maureen Ohlhausen, while several industry leaders with significant experience in the field of data security will also attend.
Big name brands such as Intel, Microsoft, AT&T and Google have all signed on as sponsors of Data Privacy Day 2013, highlighting just how important an issue this area of cyber security has become.
Businesses in Australia looking to do their part to commemorate Data Privacy Day 2013 may want to consider scheduling a security audit evaluation in January, which can identify where shortfalls in security may be taking place.
Another option may be to undergo a Red Cell ethical hacking assessment, which simulates a potential legitimate hacking attempt in order to locate unforeseen vulnerabilities in an organisation's security protocols.
By taking steps such as these, businesses can help ensure that the personal information of both customers and employees remains secure at all times, in order to create a safer and more dependable digital landscape for everyone.