When you choose a language service provider (LSP), you’re choosing a vendor that will likely do most—or maybe all—of its work through digital or cloud-based services. The digitization of language services means you’re not paying for translation alone. You’re paying for the level of security built into your service platforms, the care with which your LSP handles your organization’s sensitive data, and the protection you’re receiving from a costly data breach.

Every service provider for your organization—including an LSP—should undergo scrutiny to ensure they’re able to offer the level of protection your business needs. Here’s a deeper look at the impact of a data breach, along with three security measures an LSP should take to provide peace of mind to your business.

What’s the impact of an LSP data breach?

A single data breach can jeopardize the future of your business—even when that breach is created through one of your vendors. According to IBM, the average monetary cost of a data breach is $3.92 million, or an average of $150 per lost record involved in a breach.

Sensitive client information, financial records, legal documents, contracts, and HIPAA-protected medical records are all examples of assets that could be compromised if your LSP experiences a data breach. Your business could be held liable for any damages or stolen information suffered by affected clients.

A single security breach can also have long-term effects on your business. The costs incurred from these breaches can last for years, inhibiting your company’s recovery. The losses created by these material losses can be compounded by lasting damage to your brand’s reputation, which could lead to increased customer churn and curb your ability to acquire new clients. 

Let’s consider a few steps your LSP can take to mitigate the risk of a data breach.

Providing a secure client portal

Unfortunately, email hacks affect organizations regularly. If your LSP is asking you to submit sensitive documents for translation via email, that should raise a huge red flag. 

A secure client portal offers a safer, more streamlined alternative. A client portal will serve as a hub of communication and collaboration with your LSP. As a result, this portal needs to be built with privacy, confidentiality, and security integrity in mind.

A secure LSP portal will incorporate features like regular software updates and patching, role-based access control, real-time backups, data encryption, clear data retention policies, and IP protected permissions, among other measures. This portal should also be regularly tested and assessed to ensure it keeps pace with evolving cybersecurity threats.

In the event of a data breach, the LSP should have a disaster recovery protocol in place to mitigate any damages their clients may suffer.

ISO 27001 Compliance

ISO 27001 outlines international standards for information security management. Compliance with these standards offers insight into an LSP’s ability to maintain secure practices across borders. Here’s a brief overview of what this standard requires of an organization:

If security is a top priority when shopping for an LSP, ISO 27001 compliance should be one of your top factors to consider.

Acquiring a SOC 2 Type 2 report

A SOC 2 Type 2 report can offer more granular insights into the specific security protocols protecting an LSP’s clients. A SOC 2 Type 2 report is an independent audit of these security features. It offers detailed information about how your company’s data is stored, managed, and used by your LSP.

This audit encompasses a period of at least six months. Therefore, the insights from this report reflect trends and practices over a longer time frame. This can offer a better reflection of the LSP’s typical operating procedures as related to security. 

Third-party audits and international standards like SOC 2 Type 2 and ISO 27001 aren’t the only way to vet a provider’s security profile. However, they offer clients common ground for objectively comparing one provider’s practices against another’s. 

While no business can fully guarantee safety from a security breach, security-savvy clients understand the value of working with vendors that go the extra mile to mitigate risks. When vetting your LSP, make sure security is made a part of your service from day one.

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