Digital safety is one of the top concerns for the modern-day corporation. In the midst of dealing with competitors, managing customer service related issues, and attending to the company’s mission and bottom line, a digital security issue can quickly become a huge problem. Hackers get an ominous reputation in the media, but the reality is that many day-to-day workers don’t have the slightest clue as to how those hackers are likely to get information, and how a little bit of information can cause damage to themselves and the company they work for.
When you are a nonprofit organization, the potential risk posed to company interests is even greater. Nonprofits have their mission front and center and work hard to push as much of the financial gains as possible towards their targeted area of need. This means that there is a lot less of a safety net when problems develop. What’s more, many nonprofits are actually at a higher risk for facing a digital security breach than other traditional corporations thanks to the large volunteer workforce that nonprofits typically rely on.
This is why it is so highly recommended that nonprofit organizations of all sizes partner with a qualified nonprofit tech company who can provide the security and digital safety support needed to make sure that your nonprofit, your donors, and your volunteers all remain safe from malicious software attacks and potential hackers.
Nonprofit organizations are typically at a heightened digital safety risk, but many nonprofit organizers are often unaware of this concern. The problem that creates this increased security issue is one of those “good problems.” A large voluntary workforce means a lot of people from a lot of different places working on your behalf. Nonprofits typically rely on volunteers to do a great deal of their groundwork, and so getting information to these volunteers, keeping in touch with these volunteers, and training these volunteers as to how to best maintain the organization’s mission is of paramount importance. Yet, this is exactly where the biggest risk stems from.
Corporations provide new employees with corporate e-mail addresses and server access for several reasons. Cohesion and easier communication between employees is definitely a benefit, but this also provides a safer way to communicate. Providing server-based laptops to every nonprofit worker is entirely unrealistic for most nonprofit organizations, but this practice is actually hugely beneficial for corporate digital safety. The security risk that nonprofits are opened to at an incredibly heightened rate stems from volunteers communicating from unprotected devices, sharing highly personal information about donors, including names, home addresses, and even credit card or banking information, and the potential for outside hackers to be picking up this information easily, using it to whatever malicious intent that they choose.
Partnering with an IT specialist, especially nonprofit tech companies who are well-versed in caring for nonprofit organizations, can make a huge difference in helping your nonprofit maintain security in all digital communication.
The problems that nonprofits face are largely unique to each nonprofit. Differentiated fundraising techniques, and targeting different populations based on interest in different issues means that every nonprofit faces a unique risk in digital communication and potential virus contraction. Working with an IT specialist can help your company to ensure that you are taking the steps that make the most sense to you, and that you have developed a safety protocol that addresses the threats that you are actually facing.
Simply encouraging your volunteers to be wise with how they share information can go a long way in protecting potential donors, not to mention your own nonprofit, from experiencing malicious attacks. However, this isn’t going to be foolproof. In the nonprofit world, there are always new volunteers, and there are always exceptions in which information will be shared in a non-ideal way, and having a protocol in place isn’t going to stop a potential hacker from seeing what they can find. Encouraging your volunteers to download anti-virus software on their personal computers can also help, as can developing a mobile app that will control the way that volunteers communicate with you, but these solutions are only going to work for some of your nonprofit base.
Non-profit organizations are at unique risk from a digital perspective. Relying on volunteers and community outreach for support means less control over who is communicating with you, and how. This makes working with a quality IT company more important than ever. Working with a top-rated San Francisco IT services company who specializes in providing services for nonprofits can make keeping your information simple, while also helping to streamline your entire digital framework.
My philosophy when starting OTT was I wanted to create a place that I would want to work at (fun and friendly.) Where there was no corporate politics and we could just do our job fixing things and helping people. We can help people with their technology and not be arrogant or condescending to people. We can actually make a difference in peoples lives and not just say it but do it.
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