Setting Up Access Controls and Permissions in Your CRM

The key to getting the most out of your customer relationship management system (CRM) is following best practices for managing the customer data you gather and store. An incredibly important aspect of managing that data is creating access controls and permissions within your CRM to restrict data access to those who need it and keep others out.

The number of data compromises in the United States has been steadily rising for almost two decades, making it more important than ever for companies to safeguard their customers’ data to prevent it from being publicly exposed. Implementing user controls and permissions helps protect your CRM data against attack so you can keep running your business—and gaining your customers’ trust. 

Why do you need to use access controls and permissions?

Underestimating the importance of data privacy and compliance is a dangerous game. Your business stores a lot of data in its CRM, and chances are that your customers and leads don’t want that information available to just anyone. 

Creating access controls and permissions within your CRM helps you manage who can access and use sensitive customer data. Taking this step can lead to several benefits for your company and customers, including: 

  • Keeping customer data safe from malicious actors
  • Avoiding spending time and money to recover from a data compromise
  • Complying with industry regulations 
  • Preventing business disruptions
  • Protecting your organization’s reputation 
  • Maintaining your customers’ satisfaction with your company
  • Safeguarding against fines for failing to adhere to data privacy laws and potential lawsuits from customers 

How to improve your CRM data security with access controls and permissions

When it comes to data security, storing your customer and lead data in the right place makes all the difference. 

Using a CRM system offers numerous benefits, including improving your data security by encrypting data and storing it on a secure infrastructure. Ensure your CRM uses robust data security measures to protect your information.

Even with a CRM that takes security seriously, your business can take extra steps to improve security. Learn how to protect your CRM data in the guide below:

1. Define user roles and permissions

The first step in improving your CRM data security is defining user roles and permissions. Permissions specify which actions your CRM users can take with your data, and implementing roles lets you establish which groups of permissions each user can have. 

Defining user roles and permissions in your CRM is one of the essential steps for setting up your CRM. These roles ensure that only authorized users can access specific kinds of data. By creating roles and permissions, you can restrict access to data to those who need it to complete their assigned tasks, lowering the chance that your data will be mishandled.  

How do you define roles and permissions?

You can define user roles and permissions by determining how much access each CRM user needs and restricting their data access based on their responsibilities. Follow these steps to define the user roles and permissions in your CRM: 

  • Consider how many users need access to your CRM data: Since many CRMs price their systems by user, you’ve likely already considered how many people on your team need access to your CRM. Generally, this group includes your administrators, sales and marketing teams, and customer service reps. 
  • Decide which responsibilities users will have: Your CRM’s users may have different responsibilities within the platform. For example, sales representatives may need more access to customer information, while reports and analytics might be more helpful to your marketing team. Each user’s responsibilities affect what permissions they need in the system.
  • Create teams or departments in your CRM: Once you know who needs access and what kinds of permissions they need, you can create teams in your CRM. You can then give users the right permissions, whether it’s access to all data, only their team’s data, or only their own data. 

2. Set up access controls

Once you have defined and implemented user roles and permissions, the next step is to set up access controls in your CRM. Access controls are the mechanism for identifying users and regulating what information they can view in a computing system. Access controls are critical because they guarantee that users have appropriate access to data stored in your CRM. 

How do you set up access controls?

There are several types of access controls you can implement with your CRM users. Here are a few tips for setting up the controls you need:

  • Create user login credentials: Requiring users to provide login credentials before they can access your CRM keeps unauthorized users out, protecting your data. Your CRM should enable your team to set their own passwords when you create new users in the system.
  • Implement multi-factor authentication: Requiring your users to use another method to authenticate their identity besides just a password helps reduce the chance of a data breach in case a password is compromised. Multi-factor authentication (MFA) asks users for additional information after inputting their password, such as a code sent to their email or phone number or the answer to a secret question. Implementing MFA helps tighten security surrounding your customer data. 
  • Set up IP-based access controls: Finally, create access controls based on Internet Protocol (IP) technology. This type of access restricts users’ entry into your CRM based on their IP address, ensuring that only authorized users can access your system.   
  • Utilize controls built into your CRM: Be sure to use any access controls that are already built into your CRM. For example, you can create CRM user roles like administrators and non-administrators and restrict their data viewing, exporting, and editing permissions. 

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Choose the CRM that provides the best data protection

Safeguarding your customers’ data is critical to running a successful business. That’s why it’s important to set up user roles and permissions, create data access controls, and perform regular backups. By taking these steps, you can protect your data from an attack and return to business as usual in case of a security breach. 

Choosing a trustworthy CRM is one of the best steps you can take to protect your customer data. And when you need a CRM that takes your data security and reliability seriously, Nutshell is the answer. 

Nutshell is an all-in-one CRM that helps your business organize its information, close more deals, and protect its customers’ data. While other CRMs force you to request data backups and might even make you pay for them, Nutshell routinely backs up your data no matter your plan. Nutshell also makes it easy for administrators to define user permissions and roles, so everyone on your team only sees what they need to. 

Want to learn more? Contact us to get the answers to your questions or sign up for a free trial to see Nutshell in action!


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