Business identity theft happens all the time, we often see it reported on TV or read about it in newspapers. But most business owners believe business identity theft won’t happen to them. Unfortunately, they’re wrong.
Identity thieves who target businesses are cunning and determined. In most instances, when the theft is uncovered, it is usually too late with business owners left reeling from financial losses and tarnished reputation.
One might ask, how does ID theft happen? According to the California’s Secretary of State, business identity theft occurs when “criminals pose as owners, officers, or employees of a business to illegally get cash, credit, and loans, leaving the victimized business with the debts.”
With business owners facing challenges staying competitive or simply keeping their business afloat, many feel that they can’t afford to invest in identity theft protection services even if they want to.
Fortunately, there are steps that small business can take to protect their company from identity theft. Here are proactive actions business owners and their employees can take to minimize their risk:
Protect Sensitive Company Information
All documents containing important business information like trade secrets, financial documents, employer identification number (EIN), tax identification number (TIN), and the like, should be kept in a safe and secure location. To keep unauthorized persons away, businesses should consider using access control cards similar to those used in secure military facilities. These access cards are relatively cheap to deploy and easy to produce.
Employee workspaces, storage rooms, and other areas within company premises need to be protected from prying eyes as well. A good cost-effective way to do this is through the use of an ID card system for employees, clients, customers, contractors, cleaning and maintenance crew, and even visitors.
To explore options on how to implement an ID card system, e-mail the experts at IDSuperstore.com or call them at 1-800-667-1772.
Secure Company Equipment and Network
To minimize or completely eliminate the risk of data theft through spyware, viruses, and other malwares, online activities such as web browsing, online gaming, file sharing, and use of social networks must be restricted on business computers.
Most company computers nowadays are connected to each other via company networks. One way to secure proprietary information traveling between and among business computers is through a network firewall. A firewall can either be a software program or a hardware device that monitors and filters external connections to a company’s data network. It prevents unauthorized computers from accessing data on company workstations.
Monitor Business Registration Information
Most Secretaries of Sate now offer free email notification services for when a company’s business registration information such as name, address, registered agent, officers, business owner, has been changed or updated. Signing for services like these can serve as early warning of potential fraud.
Periodic review of business registration information online for both active and closed businesses must also be done to protect against fraudulent reinstatement.
Understand the Risk and Train Employees
Criminals capitalize on vulnerability, which is why they often target unsuspecting businesses.
Knowing how identity thieves work, and being familiar with the methods they use, can help businesses avoid becoming a victim fraud and identity theft.
Be proactive with your company's security. Talk to our ID security experts about access control cards and fingerprint scanners today.
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