No matter what industry your contact center supports, it handles sensitive data regularly. Whether you are making payments or managing accounts, it is your responsibility to protect your customers’ data.
While contact center security is serious business, it doesn’t have to be difficult to implement. Four pillars support a strong security system: policy, procedure, protection, and practice.
Here, we explore how you can engage with these pillars to create an environment that protects your customers’ data.
Policy, Procedure, Protection, and Practice
Being able to secure an environment requires understanding how it functions. Due to customer demands and advances in technology, the contact center environment is constantly shifting.
The demand to embrace a digitally transformative strategy has led many contact centers to the cloud. It offers flexibility in an industry that demands constant change.
The good news is that you can take the same approach to cloud security as on-premise IT. Security concerns like unauthorized data exposure, weak access controls, and attack vulnerability affect traditional contact center IT and cloud environments alike. Securing both environments require you to:
- See the current state of security
- Immediately know if unusual activities happen
- Trace and respond to unexpected events.
Using the four “P’s” as guidance you can develop a secure system no matter how it functions.
Your policy outlines what you believe in. Use it to set goals and standards for your security solutions to adhere to. Your policy should frame how your organization views contact center security.
It should consider:
- Any compliance and regulation measures specific to your industry
- ACD security risks
- Your organization’s culture and values
- Your agents’ role in upholding contact center security
One very important value in the contact center is customer service. Contact center security policy must commit to customer service by keeping personal data safe.
The security procedure is how your policy is carried out. It should explain in detail how to protect against the security risks outlined in your policy.
Procedures need to include clear details of how to not only prevent security breaches but also how they are handled and contained.
They should include:
- Security logs and controls
- Who is responsible
- How, when and where security measure happens
Unfortunately, security is not “set it and forget it”. Threats are constantly changing and so should your security procedures. You and your support team must work to stay ahead of threats and incorporate new procedures to meet them.
What kind of protection can you offer your customers in the case that a security control fails? Your contact center security must include how you will protect your customers both before and after an incident.
Outline protection protocols that cover all aspects of your contact center paying special attention to:
- Payment security solutions
- Personal data security
- Purchase history records
Writing your contact center security plan out is not enough. When under the pressure of a true security breach, your plan might crumble without adequate practice. Practicing security protocol lets you focus on weak links and strengthen them.
Through practice, your team will be able to understand the effects of specific breaches. An IVR payment security breach becomes something tangible. Practice sheds light on what breach might mean for your organization, and your customer.
What to do now?
Increased agent training
Contact centers are the target for many phishing and spear-phishing campaigns. Teaching your agents and managers how to spot them is the first step in defense. Practice is the second.
Train them to recognize red flags like:
- Generic greetings – “Dear Employee” or “colleague”
- Urgent requests
- Spelling and grammar mistakes
- Strange looking URL links
- Bad formatting
Sending out messages and emails to your agents that include any of the sure signs of a phishing campaign can give them the practice they need to stay wary.
Update your software
One of the easiest ways to protect against data breaches is to make sure your software is up to date. Your call center tools should be in line with current technology. Stop running that program from ten years ago. It’s full of bugs and defense holes!
Omnichannel software systems can help keep your eyes everywhere they need to be at once. Omnichannel systems allow data to flow freely and your security plan to reach all channels at once. Omnichannel keeps in focus often overlooked areas:
- Webchat payment security
- PCI compliance
- Social media
Building a security plan around policy, procedure, protection, and practice is not an infallible defense by any means. But these four pillars help you bring focus and purpose to your security plan.