Following the recent changes to data protection law and the official implementation of GDPR, we understand that as a salon business owner, the data acquired by your business is at the forefront of your mind. Here, we explore the ways in which you can prevent your salon from being vulnerable to data theft.

What is data theft?

Data theft isn’t always due to a cyber attack, there are a number of ways your data may become vulnerable. Everything from poorly trained staff to lax housekeeping can leave your business open and susceptible to data breaches. Hackers can pose a threat to your salon business, and they can get in simply by a member of staff opening what they believe to be an innocent email attachment! You also need to mindful of who has access to your client database. It’s not uncommon in the hair and beauty industry to have a higher staff turnover, and with team members leaving, you absolutely don’t want your client database being copied and downloaded by a departing employee.

Recommended precautions to take to avoid threats of data theft…

  • Change your passwords regularly

This is particularly important if a member of staff leaves your business. It’s recommended to change your passwords every month and ensure that it isn’t a password that is easily guessable such as your salon name, your birthday or your favourite brand. Try to select a password that is at least 6 characters and includes a combination of upper and lower case letters, numbers and symbols.

  • Ensure your staff are correctly trained

Avoid any potentially damaging mistakes that could have been prevented by ensuring that your salon staff, and in particular your reception staff, are correctly trained in:

  1. Using client management software
  2. Managing client details appropriately
  3. GDPR best practice.

Discover our in-depth guide on how to ensure your salon training sessions are successful

You also need to ensure that your salon handbook is up to date and covers what is expected when staff are using software, salon booking systems, salon databases, email accounts, social media, and the internet. Clearly set these expectations from the outset and always have them on hand to refer to should an issue arise.

Related: How to manage client information in your salon 

Other data-led aspects to consider…

  • Never disclose your salon business passwords to anyone outside of your business and as we alluded to earlier, change them regularly!
  • If you need to store passwords, ensure they are meaningless to anyone else and are kept in a locked filing cabinet. Do not leave passwords within sight of your clients!
  • If possible, give all of your staff their own logins – this way it’s easier to track who has access to data and when they have interacted with it.
  • Be mindful of disposing of smartphones, laptops and any other computers that may store client data. Always wipe electronics before disposing of them responsibly.

Discover more information about data breaches and what to do if you’ve had one by visiting the official ICO website 

Always check with them if you aren’t sure about data and privacy regulation