5 mons ago
Author: EA DigestCategory : Cyber law
In todayâ€™s world where we all are connected through the internet, computer data is the most valuable asset to any company. The data is the source of business and is highly crucial for the survival of the business. It can be any data such as the client database, internal data of the company, strategy, ideas etc. The organisations are also at high risk of data theft by none other than the employees of the company. Read on to know more about data theft by employees and what you can do in such scenarios.
What is Data?
The Information Technology Act, 2000 vide its Section 2(o) explains and defines the term data as representation of facts, information, knowledge, concepts or instructions prepared in a formalised manner which is intended to be processed. It is processed or intended to be processed in a computer system or network in any form or can be stored in the internal memory.
Types of Data
Some of the data can be generalised while some data is of personal and sensitive nature. The Information Technology Rules, 2011, have issued some directives to issue the personal and sensitive data. Information such as passwords, financial information, banking details, sexual orientation, medical history, and biometric records fall under the sensitive information category and hence are protected under these rules.
What is Data Theft?
In the simplest terms, data theft is nothing but copying, removing or stealing of the confidential information in an illegal or unauthorised manner. Theft also refers to stealing the data which is valuable, personal and confidential in nature without the consent of the authorised person. The organisations are at the highest risk when it comes to data theft as they store valuable and sensitive information like trade secrets, clientâ€™s details, strategies etc.
How to prevent Data Theft?
Even though the employees are the biggest assets of any organisation they have the first hand and easy access to the data of the company. They are involved in the day to day working and are also familiar with the processes and systems of the organisation which makes it easier for them to search loopholes in the system for data theft. Since the liability of the data theft also remains with the organisation, it is important to adopt the following preventive measures against data theft:-
- Data protection policy- A well-drafted data protection policy will help in establishing the right practices against data theft.
- Non-disclosure agreement- Signing the non-disclosure and confidentiality agreement helps in putting legal boundaries to the employees.
- Exit formalities- It is important to finish the exit formalities and thus stripping the ex-employees of any credentials which might give them access to the data.
- Latest technology- Use of better and latest technology helps in keeping the data safe by preventing unauthorised access or copying.
Legal procedure in case of Data Theft
If you still find yourself in a situation where an employee has done data theft, you can take the following steps.
- File a civil suit for breach of contract.
- File a criminal case for breach of trust.
- File a case under Information Technology Act, 2000, for data theft.
- Under the provisions of copyright, file a copyright infringement depending upon the nature of theft.
In case you are unable to decide which step to take then you can consult a data theft lawyer by clicking here.
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