RealManage Insight

The Best Recommendations to Help Protect Your HOA's Sensitive Data

by Holly Bunch on May 12, 2022 3:03:22 PM

Every Association has sensitive information that it needs to protect to ensure the safety of the association and its residents. Associations that have safe practices for keeping their residents' information safe can protect their residents, avoid liability and generally operate more smoothly.

Keep reading to learn about some of the ways your association can help protect sensitive data.

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Obey the Laws Related to Associations

It's critical to educate yourself on the laws in place to protect your association's private information. Understanding those laws can help your association avoid penalties and other legal issues that come with disobeying them.

Following these regulations also protects you from lawsuits from residents or other parties, like vendors, who feel that their information was compromised due to negligence on the part of the association.

Educate Your Board Members

An educated board will be more successful in protecting your association's personal information. Ongoing education regarding data protection  is a must. Additionally, you will also need to ensure that your board is getting training on cyber security and how to keep your private information secured.

Create a Document Policy

Your board should be working closely with the community manager to determine how to protect your association's data. 

The following are some things to consider when deciding what data is and how it will be protected:

  • determine what constitutes sensitive data such as account numbers and contact information
  • the different types of data that you will store
  • how you will store the information that you keep
  • What software the association uses currently to track and store that data
  • What protections you already have in place
  • how to handle a data breach
  • how to reset your system after a breach to keep it from happening again in the future
  • rules for using the technology programs provided by the association

It's also important to monitor who has access to HOA documents and how "exposed" the documents are to those who could use the information to harm individuals. 

Ensure You Are Using the Right Technology Partners

Choosing the right technology partners is vital to ensuring that you have an easy-to-use platform that will allow residents access to the information they need. The more trustworthy the platform is, the more residents will want to use it. 

Educate Your Residents

Offering training on how to use the association's platform to access private information can help residents find the information they need without compromising the  private data that the association stores. . 

Help residents spot possible trouble when cyber-attacks or other data breaches happen.

Review Your Association’s Insurance Coverage

No matter how secure your systems are, you should prepare in advance for a potential data breach. Therefore, you should review your association's insurance policies to verify that they cover losses and damages in case of a data breach. 

It's important to keep in mind that these policies do not usually cover cyber liabilities or data breaches unless expressly stated. 

Implement Various Security Features

Data protection starts with the security features used in your association's system. You should consider encrypting files, password-protecting data, or implementing biometric technology. This helps unauthorized access to your association's data.

You should also have an anti-virus, anti-malware, or anti-spyware installed. To avoid complete loss of data in case of a data breach, you should perform regular backups of critical and sensitive data.

Conclusion

Your association's information is an asset that all board members should always protect. Hackers are constantly digging for new ways to infiltrate association's systems to acquire their private information. 

At RealManage, we understand the effects that digital threats have on your association's data security and reputation. We have the right experience and talent to help your association tackle any challenges.

Contact us today to learn how our professionals can help you protect your association's data and keep it running

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