Protect Yourself From Business Identity Theft – 7 Ways To Get It Right.
We hear this term bandied about constantly, but mostly, those stories are about personal identity theft.
Have you ever thought though that the same levels of havoc can happen to businesses through data breaches?
Business identity theft, or corporate or commercial identity theft, means that your business has been illegally impersonated for criminal advantage.
It can happen to businesses of any size, and is generally larger scale than personal identity theft, with the ability to affect both employees and clients.
You can never know when it might happen, and although putting procedures in place to protect yourself can take a small amount of time, without the right processes your business is left exposed and vulnerable.
Think of it as another form of insurance – you never know when you might need it, but if you’re not prepared, then you are compromised, and well, that’s going to hurt.
Let’s go through everything that you need to know to protect your business from identity theft, and the associated fallout that can ensue.
Tip 1 | Have a ROBUST and SECURE Filing Systems
As much as we would all like to have paperless offices, there are still going to be some things that need printed copies. So keep those papers secure. Any records that you need to keep, for example, client details, employee records etc, should be securely locked away. Only a select and registered number of people should be able to access this information.
Tip 2 | Keep an eye on Business banking activity
Make sure your banking system is set up to alert you should there be any alarming or unusual activity. This will help you spot anything suspicious, and you can block would-be thieves in their tracks.
Tip 3 | Don’t let EVERYONE have access to EVERYTHING
Set up a system of access within your business relevant to seniority and responsibility. This is relevant for both paper files and electronic filing systems. Every employee should have individual user names and passwords, and these should never be shared between users. Having this in place also means that when an employee leaves the company, their accounts can quickly be turned off or deleted, meaning that any prying eyes don’t have a chance to take a peep at sensitive client or employee information.
Tip 4 | Use strong passwords
The most common passwords are really easy to guess. Passwords like 123456, qwerty, password and 123123 are in the top 10 of the most used. Having passwords like these are just helping unsavoury types access data – it makes it so easy for them. Use a long, unique random password, and then incorporate platforms like Lastpass, Dashlane to keep them even more secure.
Tip 5 | Beware of fake invoices
If your accounting department receives an invoice for goods that were never received or ordered, or even duplicates of invoices that were already paid, you could be getting scammed. Additionally, would-be thieves could call asking for your company’s billing information – be wary who you give this out to.
Tip 6 | Protect your social media platform passwords
With the importance of social media platforms, and their relevance for business perception, the last thing that businesses want is for someone else to be posting content that could be derogatory, defamatory, or damaging in some way. These passwords are as important as your online accounting services password – so keep it secure.
Tip 7 | Lastly, make sure you properly shred any paper documentation
If you are keeping paper business records that can be destroyed after a certain period of time, make sure you do it with a reputable shredding company. This provider should be able to show you that your matter has been completely destroyed, and supply you with a Certificate of Destruction. Avoid small office shredders, because they could easily leave you vulnerable.
One lapse could lead to an attack, which could ultimately result in loss of income, late payments, damage business reputation or even personal liability.
Don’t let it happen to you.
If you would like more information, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with us here at ShredEasy.