The 411 on Call Center Security

As call center operators work with customers to solve issues and answer questions, they come into contact with a considerable amount of sensitive data. Social security numbers, credit card information and passwords are typically exchanged over the phone, turning a call center into a hotspot for threats and breaches. We often hear about attacks on call centers occurring through their online network, but it’s also important to consider the physical security of a call center when it comes to theft, vandalism and employee safety.

All call centers that handle credit and debit card payments over the phone must be Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) compliant. This ensures the protection of card data and can be achieved through a myriad of technological processes and applications. This compliance doesn’t just involve cybersecurity, though: physical steps must also be taken to assure the proper security of the infrastructure and safety of the employees.

The challenge, however, lies in the design and layout of most call centers: they’re often broad, spacious buildings and are sometimes located in remote areas. These facilities also tend to be open 24 hours, with less staffed security overnight, which is when security breaches are likely to occur.

One of the key components of call center security is video surveillance. Because of the size and layout of the call centers, comprehensive video coverage is most effectively provided by 360-degree cameras. Instead of requiring a large number of traditional cameras to safeguard the entire call center, fewer 360-degree cameras with wider views and mounting flexibility can easily cover the necessary area.. Placed both inside and outside, 360-degree cameras can provide comprehensive coverage for alerting on and recording security or safety incidents.

The parking lots of call centers also pose a potentially dangerous environment at night. Using 360-degree cameras to monitor these areas – that should be well-lit and fenced in – can ensure safety for employees walking to or from work during quiet hours. A security guard stationed nearby should monitor the surveillance feed and possess the proper equipment and training to intervene if necessary.

Additionally, physically limiting access to sensitive data can greatly increase its security. This requires ensuring the appropriate personnel are entering the call center building by using an enhanced authentication system, and allowing only those with proper access to use the computers and technology that contain sensitive information. It’s also just as important to guarantee that former employees of the call center no longer possess access to the building.

Access control shouldn’t stop at just the outside entrances; additional locks or card readers should be placed outside of each door that gains entry to a location where critical information is housed. These doors should be in full view of the surveillance cameras in case an unfamiliar individual needs to be identified or taken care of.

It’s clear that more than just the data is vulnerable in call centers. It’s important to keep in mind the dangers that present themselves based on the physical construction of the facility and take significant measures to effectively and efficiently protect against these threats.

 

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