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Nonprofit Boards Should Understand The Dangers Of Using Insecure Messaging Tools

What Nonprofit Boards Risk by Using Insecure Messaging Apps

Board directors have millions of apps to choose from regardless of which electronic device they choose to use at any given time. Electronic apps have various levels of built-in security features. This fact presents an issue that concerns nonprofit board directors.

It’s entertaining to have the latest apps with cool features. That’s fine for most people, but board directors aren’t most people. Cybercriminals know well that board directors deal with highly sensitive and confidential information. Hackers are especially on the lookout for high-profile individuals and notable nonprofits that they can target as victims of ransomware attacks.

In the nonprofit world, personal and business email platforms simply aren’t secure enough to be used for the confidential nature of board business. While it may be convenient to pull up a personal email or business email account to send off a quick email to a fellow board director, a hasty email sent on the wrong platform could result in a phishing or malicious cyberattack that could harm your nonprofit.

Being Aware of Technological Risks in Nonprofit Boardrooms

Nonprofit board directors who choose to use run-of-the-mill electronic apps for board business, even occasionally, are subjecting their board and organization to many different types of risks. Consider these key risks:

  • Financial loss
  • Identity theft
  • Loss of intellectual property
  • Loss of reputation
  • Strength of branding
  • Breaches trust with customers and other stakeholders
  • Loss of data or assets
  • Holding systems hostage for ransom
  • Operational loss
  • Disrupts and halts operations
  • Regulatory impact
  • Fines due to negligence
  • Supervised remediation
  • Can shut down vital life and societal services, such as hospitals, energy and utilities


It’s a long list of risks that are not worth taking when boards should be using a highly secure board portal with a fully integrated and equally secure communications application like Diligent Messenger for BoardEffect.

Challenges That Technology Creates With Communication

Communication is a major challenge for busy nonprofit board directors. Nonprofit board directors often sit on several boards. The importance of their board work requires them to communicate with their peers on a regular basis.

App developers have no restrictions or regulations on incorporating security measures of any kind. They have complete liberty to add or eliminate any range of security enhancements.

The lack of security features on publicly available apps, such as personal and business email platforms, should concern every board director. This was a hard lesson that four individuals from Wells Fargo bank and Jefferies employee Christopher Niehaus learned when they communicated using What’sApp, exposing confidential corporate information in the process.

Without thinking about the consequences, nonprofit board directors may resort to using personal or business email platforms or random messenger apps for convenience or in haste to send out a quick message. Using insecure messaging platforms can be a costly mistake that carries a long list of risks.

Best practices for board communications require board directors to communicate in ways that are secure, timely, accurate and reflect good governance principles. This concept is especially true for board directors who hold multiple board positions.

Highly Secure Messaging Applications Eliminate Worry Over Insecure Communications

Unnecessary risk-taking can be a thing of the past when nonprofit boards implement a highly secure board management software system like BoardEffect that integrates fully with a secure messaging platform.

Diligent Messenger for BoardEffect is a cutting-edge software solution that ensures that every message, no matter how short or long, will be received on the other end without undue interference. A digital solution, such as Diligent Messenger for BoardEffect, is the surest way to safeguard sensitive and confidential nonprofit board information. How secure is Messenger?

Other communications software programs bill themselves as having top-notch security with few facts to back up their claims. Messenger proves that the product has rock-solid security by investing in the following security measures:

  • SSAE 16/ISAE 3402 (SOC 1 Type 2) service organization annual audit of controls
  • Type 2 SOC 2 security and availability audit
  • HIPAA AT 101 audit
  • ISO 27001 certified since February 2014
  • Third-party vulnerability scanning and penetration testing
  • Employee training in data security requirements

Diligent Messenger for BoardEffect Offers Valuable Security Features

In gaining feedback from customers, Diligent software developers created new features and enhancements to greater protect board directors in their communications processes. BoardEffect customers will appreciate such features as email retrieval, secure attachments and remote wiping.

At one time or another, most board directors admit to having sent an email and regretted sending it just seconds later. Messenger has a feature that allows users to retrieve a sent email. This is an awesome safeguard for sending that occasional accidental email or hitting “reply all” when that wasn’t the intent.

Messenger also has a feature for sending attachments securely. BoardEffect users can utilize the platform to download sensitive documents and attachments right within the BoardEffect board portal. This eliminates the risks of downloading files on board members’ personal or work electronic devices. Messenger protects files at the highest levels, which keeps hackers at bay. Diligent provides peace of mind for busy nonprofit board directors, who know that their communications are protected with state-of-the-art encryption, secure data storage and extra security for attachments.

Another feature that nonprofit board members will appreciate is the remote wiping capability. Electronic devices are small, making them convenient for travel. The small sizes of electronic devices may cause them to become lost or stolen. Messenger has a remote wiping capability. If a device gets lost or stolen, all a board director needs to do is contact BoardEffect and a representative will be happy to erase personal information from a remote location before it has a chance to get into the wrong hands.

Nonprofit Boards Don’t Have to Risk Using Insecure Messaging Applications

With Diligent Messenger for BoardEffect, nonprofit boards don’t have to risk using insecure messaging applications. Using a secure communications platform will eliminate liability issues for board administrators and general counsels. The platform helps to support governance and accountability while enhancing communication and collaboration among the board.

Diligent is an industry leader in board management software solutions. The company backs up its products with a team of knowledgeable customer service representatives 24/7 every day of the year. Robust training options, including in-person sessions, self-service videos and tutorials, will get board directors up to speed on using Messenger quickly.

It’s secure apps like Diligent Messenger for BoardEffect that replace worry over secure communications with control for nonprofit board directors, so they can become responsible, top leaders in the nonprofit realm.

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