9 Key Steps for Salesforce Admins to Safeguard Their Salesforce Org

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Published on: October 1, 2021 Updated on: March 09, 2024 views Icon 395 Views

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Sakshi Arora
Sakshi Arora LinkedIn

Assistant Manager- Content Marketing

Sakshi Arora is a seasoned content writer and marketer specializing in B2B topics such as marketing automation and website development. Leveraging her journalism background, she infuses her work with clarity and creativity, captivating audiences. Beyond her professional pursuits, Sakshi finds joy in writing about personal emotions, showcasing her introspective side and adding a unique touch to her portfolio.

Article Reviewed By: Rahul Saini LinkedIn

Table of Contents

Salesforce has brought a parabolic shift in the way businesses perceive a CRM tool. B2B SaaS marketers utilize its potential to reach their customers in a more strategic and structured way.

Enterprises today are aware that customer data is worth millions of dollars. The primary reason why many marketers subscribe to the Salesforce solution is data handling, analysis, and accessibility to authorized users. Hence, it is imperative that the contact lists and other forms of marketing data remain secure. 

But the onus of ensuring data security is not only on Salesforce as a service provider. It is also for Salesforce admins who need to secure their Salesforce Organization. 

Definition of Salesforce Admin

Salesforce Admins serve as the backbone of an organization's Salesforce implementation. They are responsible for managing user accounts, maintaining data integrity, creating and customizing workflows, and ensuring Salesforce runs smoothly to support the sales and customer relationship management processes.

Importance of Salesforce Admin Security

Keeping your Salesforce system secure is of paramount importance to protect sensitive customer data, safeguard intellectual property, and maintain the trust of your clients. Salesforce Admin security plays a vital role in ensuring that your data remains safe from unauthorized access or potential breaches.

Overview of Salesforce Admin Security Challenges and Risks

While Salesforce offers advanced security measures, there are still challenges and risks that every Salesforce Admin needs to be aware of. These include potential data leaks, weak password management, inappropriate user access permissions, phishing attacks, and more. This guide will walk you through these challenges and provide effective strategies to mitigate them.

So let’s discuss some of the top tips for Salesforce Admins, which can come in handy when it comes to securing Salesforce data.

9 Steps to Ensure Your Salesforce Org’s Security

1. Assess Permission Sets Frequently

Permission sets give us control over users' access to customer records, fields, and other important data without making any changes to their profiles. They are an effective and easy way to control user access and thereby increase security within the organization. 

While designing permission sets, it's important to follow the principle of least privilege. Here, we need to identify the job functions, tasks, and business practices vital for our users and then design the permission sets accordingly. We must eliminate all highly sensitive permissions from the profiles and add them back to users as and when needed through fresh permission sets.

When designing new permission sets, Salesforce admins must check if the existing ones can be reused or recycled by matching them with the job functions.

Admins can also use permission sets to give temporary access to users when they need to fill in for another person or complete short-term projects. There are times when we give permissions to unauthorized team members or outside vendors to access information for a limited period, only to find out that they had access to the data even after completion of the project. 

To avoid such a situation, you can set up time-bound permissions in Salesforce. This will restrict the user from accessing vital information after the completion of the permissible period. It will save time for the admins as they won’t have to go back and forth between various permissions granted to users with limited validity.

Note: A regular audit of the permissions can inform the admins about the possibility of unwarranted access to unauthorized users.

2. Use Health Check Frequently 

Health Check is one of the favorite tools of successful Salesforce admins that they use frequently. It is located in the Security Settings section in Setup. 

Salesforce comes with a high level of security and control. However, there are certain actions that the admin should take based on the needs of the enterprise. These steps may include things like setting up secure password policies and limiting session length.

Experts recommend that you run a Health Check three times a year to ensure that nothing has changed within your org and any new security settings are addressed right away.

3. Control Accessibility Using MFA

Salesforce admins use multi-factor authentication (MFA), which is one of the strongest security controls to stop unauthorized access to enterprise data. 

MFA adds an additional line of security to the user login process by asking the users to verify their identity with two or more pieces of evidence (or “factors”) to prove they are who they say they are. 

MFA is a smart way to put additional safeguards in place against common security threats like phishing attacks. Hackers often target users’ login credentials with phishing attacks, but setting up MFA makes it extremely difficult for an attacker to get access to a user account.

4. Deploy Salesforce Optimizer

Salesforce Optimizer is a robust, free tool that analyzes your Salesforce org and finds out potential problems on the implementation side. The optimizer can also help run feature adoption with our users and is a great help while deploying MFA. 

Admins are responsible to fine-tune their MFA implementation with Optimizer by checking if any users are still logging in using non-MFA methods.

We can also use Optimizer to strengthen other security requirements. For example, an admin can use it to strike out users who haven’t logged in for a while to see if these users don’t wish to log in anymore.

Admins can also determine the number of users and have a System Administrator profile to understand if it's time to reassess their permissions. Remember, it’s best to limit the most comprehensive permissions to the smallest number of people. 

5. Use Trailhead and Salesforce Community to Determine Your Aid

The Salesforce community is a resource that provides a helping hand to the admins facing any difficulties. It is a platform that works to facilitate collaboration and connection for employees, business partners, and customers.  

Salesforce admins should create and join communities to get answers to their queries. Also, admins should keep themselves updated by going through the trailhead. 

Trailhead is a series of online tutorials that coach beginner and intermediate developers who want to learn about setting up and utilizing the Salesforce platform.

The learning program is designed to help admins by providing a series of interactive assessments. to identify whether or not the candidates have grasped the concepts. Admins can also keep a track of all new features launched with each new release. 

6. User Authentication

When it comes to Salesforce Admin Security, user authentication plays a crucial role in ensuring the safety and confidentiality of your organization's data. User authentication is the process of verifying the identity of users who are attempting to access your Salesforce admin portal.

A. Importance of User Authentication in Salesforce Admin Security

User authentication is essential in maintaining the integrity of your Salesforce admin portal. By implementing stringent user authentication measures, you can ensure that only authorized individuals have access to sensitive company information.

B. Secure user login credentials

1. Best practices for creating strong passwords

  • Encourage users to create passwords that are at least 8 characters long and include a combination of uppercase and lowercase letters, numbers, and special characters.
  • Discourage the use of common passwords, such as "password" or "123456".
  • Regularly prompt users to change their passwords to maintain security.

2. Password encryption techniques

  • Implement password encryption to ensure that even if the data is compromised, the actual passwords remain secure.
  • Use industry-standard encryption algorithms, such as bcrypt or SHA-256.

3. Password expiration and reset policies

  • Set a policy that requires users to reset their passwords regularly.
  • Send password reset links to users' registered email addresses to authenticate their identity before allowing them to change their passwords.

C. Two-Factor Authentication (2FA)

1. Understanding 2FA and its benefits

Two-Factor Authentication (2FA) adds an extra layer of security by requiring users to provide two forms of identification: something they know (password) and something they have (mobile device). This significantly reduces the risk of unauthorized access to your Salesforce admin portal.

2. Implementing 2FA in the Salesforce admin portal

Enable 2FA for all users in the Salesforce admin portal.

3. Role-Based Access Control (RBAC)

Implement Role-Based Access Control to ensure that users only have access to the information and functions necessary for their roles.

4. Data Security

Implement strict data security measures, such as encryption, data loss prevention, and secure data transfer protocols.

5. Managing External Sharing

Control external sharing and collaboration by defining granular permissions and sharing rules.

6. Audit and Monitoring

Regularly monitor user activity, access logs, and system logs to detect and prevent unauthorized access or suspicious behavior.

7. IP Restrictions and Login Hours

Restrict access based on IP addresses and set login hours to prevent unauthorized access during non-business hours.

8. Mobile Device Security

Implement mobile device security measures, such as requiring device passcodes and enabling remote wipe or lock capabilities.

9. Security Reviews and Compliance

Regularly review and update security policies to align with industry standards and ensure compliance with data protection regulations.

10. Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA)

Consider adding additional authentication factors, such as biometrics or security tokens, for enhanced security.

11. Training and Education

Provide ongoing training and education to users on best practices for security, including password management and recognizing phishing attempts.

7. Audit and Monitoring

Audit and Monitoring play a crucial role in ensuring the security of your Salesforce Admin. By implementing effective monitoring practices, you can proactively identify and address any potential security threats or breaches.

Importance of Audit and Monitoring in Salesforce Admin Security

Audit and Monitoring serve as a powerful deterrent against unauthorized activities and provide valuable insights into potential vulnerabilities within your Salesforce platform. By regularly monitoring user activities, system changes, and login history, you can maintain a secure environment and swiftly respond to any suspicious events.

User Activity Monitoring

One of the key aspects of Audit and Monitoring is tracking user actions and changes made within the Salesforce platform. This helps you keep a close eye on all user activities, ensuring that they adhere to the established security protocols. By promptly identifying and addressing any unusual or unauthorized activities, you can prevent potential security breaches.

Detecting suspicious or unauthorized activities is another critical aspect of User Activity Monitoring. By configuring alerts and notifications, you can receive real-time updates whenever there are any abnormal user actions or unauthorized access attempts. This enables you to take immediate action and mitigate any potential threats to your Salesforce Admin.

System Change Tracking

Monitoring and reviewing system changes is essential for ensuring the security of your Salesforce Admin. By logging and analyzing system changes, you can identify any potential vulnerabilities or unauthorized modifications made to your Salesforce implementation.

By regularly reviewing and analyzing system changes, you can quickly detect any suspicious activities, such as unexpected access permission modifications or changes in the configuration settings. This enables you to promptly address any security concerns and maintain the integrity of your Salesforce Admin.

Login History Tracking

Monitoring login history is crucial for identifying potential security breaches in your Salesforce Admin. By regularly reviewing the login history logs, you can identify any unauthorized login attempts or suspicious activities.

Investigating and mitigating unauthorized login attempts is an essential part of maintaining a secure Salesforce Admin. By analyzing the login history, you can identify patterns or anomalies, enabling you to take immediate action and prevent any unauthorized access to your Salesforce platform.

8. Role-Based Access Control (RBAC)

Role-Based Access Control (RBAC) is an essential component of Salesforce Admin Security. It allows organizations to assign user roles and profiles, define permission sets, implement field-level security, and control data access based on user responsibilities.

A. Introduction to RBAC in Salesforce Admin Security

RBAC provides a logical framework for managing user access to various Salesforce features and data. It ensures that only authorized users can perform specific actions and view sensitive information. By implementing RBAC, organizations can enhance their overall data security and minimize the risk of unauthorized access.

B. User Roles and Profiles

User roles and profiles form the foundation of RBAC in Salesforce. They determine the level of access and permissions granted to users based on their responsibilities and job functions.

  1. Creating and managing user roles: Administrators can create and customize user roles to reflect the organizational hierarchy. This allows for efficient delegation of responsibilities and ensures proper access control.
  2. Assigning appropriate profiles to users: Profiles define the settings and permissions that determine what users can do within Salesforce. Admins can assign the most suitable profiles to users based on their job requirements and access needs.

C. Permission Sets

Permission sets provide additional access and permissions to users beyond what their profiles offer. They are used to grant specific privileges to users based on their responsibilities or project requirements.

  1. Defining permission sets based on user responsibilities: Admins can create custom permission sets that grant access to specific objects, fields, or functionalities needed by certain user roles.
  2. Assigning permission sets to specific users: Once custom permission sets are defined, admins can assign them to individual users or groups to provide them with the necessary additional access and permissions.

D. Field-Level Security

Field-Level Security allows admins to control access to specific fields within Salesforce objects. It ensures that only authorized users can view or edit sensitive data.

  1. Implementing field-level security to control data access: Admins can configure field-level security settings to determine which users or roles can view or edit specific fields within Salesforce objects.
  2. Granting read and edit access based on user roles: By assigning appropriate field-level security settings, admins can ensure that users only have access to the fields they need for their job roles, while maintaining data confidentiality and integrity.

9. Data Security

Data security is a crucial aspect of Salesforce Admin, ensuring that sensitive information is protected against unauthorized access or data breaches. This section provides an overview of data security in Salesforce Admin, as well as specific measures that can be implemented to enhance data protection.

A. Overview of Data Security in Salesforce Admin

When it comes to data security, Salesforce Admin offers a robust set of features and tools to safeguard your organization's data. Built-in security measures such as user authentication and role-based access control (RBAC) provide a solid foundation for protecting data.

B. Data Encryption

Data encryption is a critical component of data security, ensuring that confidential information remains secure even if it falls into the wrong hands. Salesforce Admin enables you to implement encryption mechanisms for sensitive data, making it unreadable without the encryption key.

  • Implementing encryption mechanisms for sensitive data: Salesforce Admin allows you to encrypt fields containing sensitive information, such as social security numbers or credit card details. This ensures that even if the data is accessed by unauthorized individuals, it remains encrypted and unusable.
  • Encryption key management and rotation: Salesforce Admin provides tools for managing encryption keys, allowing you to rotate them periodically to enhance security. Regular key rotation reduces the risk of unauthorized decryption and compromises.

C. Data Masking

Data masking is another vital technique for protecting sensitive data within Salesforce Admin. It involves replacing sensitive information with realistic but fictitious data, ensuring that unauthorized individuals cannot identify or misuse the original data.

  • Utilizing data masking techniques to protect sensitive information: Salesforce Admin enables you to define data masking rules to automatically mask sensitive data fields. This ensures that only authorized individuals can view the actual data, while maintaining data integrity for other system processes.
  • Masking data in sandbox environments: Salesforce Admin allows you to apply data masking in sandbox environments, ensuring that even during testing or development, sensitive data remains protected. This helps maintain compliance with data privacy regulations and prevents accidental exposure.

D. Data Loss Prevention (DLP) Measures

To prevent data leakage or unauthorized data exports, implementing data loss prevention (DLP) measures is essential. Salesforce Admin offers tools and features to monitor and control data movements within the system, reducing the risk of data breaches.

  • Implementing DLP solutions to prevent data leakage: Salesforce Admin allows you to define DLP policies to monitor and block sensitive data from being shared or exported without authorization. These policies can automatically alert administrators or block unauthorized actions, enhancing data security.
  • Monitoring and preventing unauthorized data exports: Salesforce Admin provides visibility into data exports, allowing administrators to monitor and control the exporting of sensitive information. By setting up alerts or restrictions, you can prevent data from being exported to unauthorized locations or recipients.

Implementing these data security measures within Salesforce Admin greatly enhances the protection of your organization's sensitive information. By utilizing encryption, data masking, and DLP solutions, you can strengthen data security and mitigate the risk of data breaches or unauthorized access.

Conclusion

Don't forget that a developer is just a facilitator for the organization. On the other hand, Salesforce admins are those people who know the business processes well and help developers understand the right solution architecture.

Salesforce admins are the backbone of the entire CRM process. They should have the access to more resources and freedom to achieve the full potential of the CRM function. 

Experts at Growth Natives bring decades of the collective experience and deliver tailored solutions that are best suited to your business needs.
To learn about our Salesforce development services, shoot us an email at info@growthnatives.com.

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