Vistor log books are a smart security practice to keep track of visitors as they come and go from your office. Logging visitors is often required by your insurance underwriter as a way to manage your firm’s liability. Compliance standards, such as PCI DDS, also require visitor logging as a way to maintain a paper trail of visitors and their activities. However, if not properly managed, your front desk “sign-in” sheet can actually create more security risk for your firm than it mitigates.

All too often, Soteria visits colleagues at their offices and is “greeted” by unstaffed desks with visitor log books in plain site. What many businesses don’t consider is that their sign-in book is a trove of valuable information. Who visits your office? How often? For what purpose? On what day and when? If not properly guarded, your visitor log book becomes a tool for people to easily gain intel on your business’ daily activities and relationships.

Additionally, if your business bears responsibility for maintaining client confidentiality, guarding this data isn’t a mere recommendation, but a legal requirement!

Visitor Log Security Tip: In order to meet your insurance provider’s requirements, comply with regulatory standards, maintain business privacy, and protect your visitor’s confidentiality, try implementing these practices at your firm:

Your receptionist is key: Receptionists are a company’s first line of defense and are key to any business’ physical security. If you have a receptionist at your firm, make sure they are aware of the security role they play and understand the importance protecting visitor logs.

Hide your visitor log book: If the front desk is unstaffed (even for a short while), make it a habit to store your log book in a secure location until someone is able to keep an eye on it.

Remove pages from your visitor log book periodically: Sometimes a hectic day at the office prevents us from being as watchful as we would like. Minimize the amount of information left out in the open by storing log sheets in a locked cabinet. No need to have them sitting out in the open!

Go hi-tech: There are electronic sign-in systems available that are compatible with desktops, laptops, and tablets. These systems electronically log and store information, while making it more difficult for prying eyes to know who has visited in the past. Make sure the electronic device itself is prevented from being stolen, and the data it contains is stored in a secure database.