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2014 is already being dubbed “the year of the data breach.” With more companies and records compromised than any time before, it has become apparent that the risks posed by the vast quantities of data we exchange every day are not being managed appropriately. 2015 is a new year and brings a new chance for data owners to dig deep and address big challenges to maintaining security.

Here are our data security predictions for the coming year:

Case law will be established around data breaches
With multiple lawsuits against major corporations pending, norms will be established that govern how future cases are treated. Depending on how these cases end, companies in the near future could be exposed to massive financial liabilities if a data breach occurs.

Data breach education becomes the norm
Stemming the risk of a data breach starts with education and training on policies and procedures. A simple human error, such as using poor passwords, can lead to a high risk of compromised data. As the pitfalls of data breaches become identified and categorized, policies and standard procedures will become commonplace at all levels of the organization.

The public cloud and data security don’t mix
The cloud is everywhere. Collaboration, storage, and backup solutions – which are often automated – are a large part of most employees’ personal lives. But when work mixes with mobile devices, home computers, and cloud-based software, the potential for a data breach increases dramatically. Companies will begin to enforce and regulate the use of these tools to eliminate risk.

Companies turn to automated policy enforcement tools
The best way to enforce a series of steps is through automation. Complex policies for data security will be automated via corporate systems to help employees maintain best practices when handling sensitive information. Companies that implement these systems quickly are likely to see increased compliance and fewer data breaches as a result.

Secure storage and collaboration goes corporate
All of the trends we have identified stem from increased awareness of the risk behind data breaches and a push to reduce those risks. As these solutions are implemented, it will become clear that to best govern risk, secure storage and collaboration solutions will be required. These solutions must be simple enough for employees to use and maintain security at every organizational level through features like permissions, watermarking, and file expiration dates. These solutions will take the place of insecure rogue solutions and will work across all devices, enabling faster business with greater security at a price point companies of all sizes can afford.

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