Every business, at any level, needs to consider the security of their business as a whole a high priority. Protecting personal customer information today is more important than ever. In the call center industry, however, I would say it is one of the most important industries to be proactive in security measures. Call centers handle credit card information, personal information, and client/business information from other companies. They have hundreds of workstations and employees, making security measures and policies extremely important. Security policies need to be as fool proof as possible to keep customers and clients secure. Here are some of the measures CTA has enacted to ensure the highest level of security in our center. Hopefully this will provide helpful things to consider at your own business!
When moving into our new location in 2017, security was the first consideration when determining the layout of our contact center. We knew how important it was to maintain compliance – especially in regards to personal electronic devices. When you walk into CTA the first thing you will see is a comfortable break area with lockers. This area is separate from our production floor and allows us to have a barrier to enforce cell phone and non cell phone areas. It also allows employees to lock up their bags, purses, electronics, keys, and any other personal items. There are no personal items allowed on our production floor aside from drinks. Any violation of this policy is grounds for immediate termination at CTA. We take this very seriously. We also have a second layer of physical security which includes a collection of audio/video cameras that are live monitored and have historical recordings. We have cameras in every area of the production and training areas as well as outside the building. This allows us to confirm or deny any suspicious activity and has proved extremely helpful for our center.
At CTA, we ensure that our production floor is very secure, allowing only hired and trained employees in their specific campaign to be where customer information is shared. General members of the public, applicants, family and friends of employees are asked to stay in the break and front desk areas, as the production floors are for employees only.
The first thing to consider for digital security is physical access to the computers. It is important that every employee has a unique log in and password to access internal and external systems. CTA maintains logon tracking and has systems in place that monitor and actively block bad logon and access attempts internally. This will ward off unauthorized access and allow reporting on which agent is working at each station. Computers should also be locked down to only access work related sites and software. Employees should not have access to social medias, general internet, personal emails, etc.
CTA has robust firewalls and perimeter protection in place to protect the call center from unauthorized access to its systems. External access to internal resources is severely limited and very few systems allow external access. One of the best ways to prevent data loss that could be caused due to a breach is to simply not store it. CTA does not store personal information any longer than necessary or credit card information at all to fully protect itself and clients. Systems with information about customers are simply not stored on systems that have external (internet) access. It is, or at least should be, standard practice to record every call that comes in and out of the call center.
Now I know all of this information could be overwhelming to a company trying to take their own sales or customer service calls in house, but this is the very reason businesses choose to outsource with a competent call center. A great call center will take care of the headache of hiring, training, and managing their own phone employees along with the security and compliance steps that must be taken to complete calls in house.