For private enterprises and government agencies, the call center is an important point of contact for customers and clients. It is increasingly common to conduct business without the customer ever setting foot on the premises. Nevertheless, security is still a major concern for call centers.
Security for a call center should take a multi-layered approach. You should not neglect physical security in favor of online security, or vice versa. The following may serve as a helpful guide for comprehensive call center security.
The switchboards of old have since been replaced with computer mainframes. The computer equipment used to run your call center is both very delicate and very valuable, which makes it vulnerable to bad actors. Therefore, it should be stored in a separate secure area, perhaps behind a vault door which only those who have a reason to access the area should be able to open. Any paper records you have relating to customer information should be similarly secured.
However, you are not only responsible for the security of customer information but for the safety of center employees. Not only should the building itself be secured against unauthorized personnel, but each individual floor should be too. There are many different options for securing call center premises against unwanted intrusion. Biometric locks, which respond to an individual's distinctive physical characteristics like fingerprints, are effective but may raise potential privacy concerns. Number pads are fairly easy to compromise as outsiders could either learn the code from employees or figure it out. Therefore, perhaps the most effective and efficient means of securing your premises is with swipe cards assigned to each employee and only granting access to the areas in which he or she is authorized to be in.
You probably collect a lot of personal information about your customers or clients that you store digitally. A data breach not only puts them at risk but also customer relations. Therefore, it is important to secure your data as carefully and thoroughly as you do your physical premises.
You should start by installing antivirus and firewall software on all your computers. Working in combination with one another, these help to defend you against malicious programming, which is disturbingly common as you navigate the internet and communicate with external parties. After installing the software, make sure to update it often. Hackers are always looking for ways around your security software, with frequent updates, you can stay one step ahead of them.
Two-factor authorization adds an extra layer of protection that helps keep unauthorized users out of your network. This requires entering a cryptic piece of information in addition to user names and passwords. Speaking of passwords, these too should be cryptic and complicated so that they are difficult to guess through the process of elimination. Strong passwords include special characters as well as letters and numbers. For extra security, you should change passwords every 90 days.
Often, a hacker gains access to your system through malicious programming that appears as a harmless-looking link in an email. Emphasize to your agents that they should never click a link in an email communication from someone they don't know. Obviously, you should also avoid clicking email links yourself.
The worst threats to your call center may not come from outside the company but within. With so much trust invested in each individual employee, it is important to be sure they are worthy of it. You should conduct background checks to be sure your new hires do not represent security risks of either a physical or digital nature. Records of identity theft, fraud, or a violent crime such as robbery should preclude access to sensitive information.
Smartphones today have abilities to record both visual and audio information. By no means should cell phones of any type be allowed on the call floor. It is unreasonable to prohibit your employees to use cell phones at all on the premises, but you should allow them only in designated areas clearly marked as such.
When it comes to the security of your call center, so much is at stake. Therefore, it requires careful and comprehensive consideration.
Publish Date: November 5, 2020 9:41 PM