How To Protect Your Business From Fraud

Businesses are under constant attack from scammers and would-be fraudsters looking for a way to ply their trade if given half a chance. If you are a business owner, how safe are your business’ assets from fraud, including cybercrimes and identity theft? 

Large corporations are not the only targets for crooks looking to make a fast buck. Companies with less than 100 workers are prone to business fraud, too, according to the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners (ACFE). Companies of this size lose an average of $155K annually due to fraud. And it is the small businesses that have a higher incidence of fraud, especially credit card fraud, often as a result of the intermingling of personal and business accounts by smaller business owners. 

The lack of security across the board, however, can be a big source of fraud in a business of any size. Inadequate computer security and network security precautions can lead to rampant business fraud. Hiring employees without background checks can also open the door to bad actors being on staff. So, what can you do, as a business owner, to help safeguard your business from the most prevalent forms of fraud?

The Phoenix fraud litigation attorneys at the Law Office of William D. Black share four tips to protect you and your business from becoming a victim of fraud:

1. Safeguard Your Finances

The sheer amount of fraud experienced by today’s businesses underscores the need for better protections to be in place when it comes to a company’s financials. This includes bank accounts, credit cards, and so forth—both belonging to the business and those of the business owner. Keep personal accounts separate from business accounts so that if crooks get their paws on one or the other, not all of your money is tied up in the aftermath of being swindled. 

2. Be Wise When Sharing Financial Information

The wise use of your credit or debit cards is important. Be sure to: 

  • Avoid allowing access to your sensitive financial information by new employees or employees with whom you are unfamiliar.
  • Pay bills online and store any paper bills away from the prying eyes of potential bad guys.
  • Have mail delivered to a secure mailbox and tightly control access to your incoming and outgoing mail.
  • Keep an eye on online banking information. Check daily, paying special attention to any charges that you do not immediately recognize or that look otherwise suspicious.
  • Use a dedicated computer just for financial transactions and banking. Preferably, this computer should not be used for things like surfing the web, browsing social media, or sending and receiving email, all of which can make the computer vulnerable to infiltration by criminals.

3. Invest in a Firewall

No business owner should allow their IT infrastructure to be exposed to potential thievery. Make an investment in an effective cybersecurity firewall along with spyware, malware, and antivirus software packages to help preserve your data and the data of customers and others that you might be storing. Be sure to back up your data so that operations can continue even if your system is attacked. 

4. Create a Password Policy

Go a step further to secure your computer systems and the data they contain with a strict password policy. Make sure that every user with access changes their password regularly, and require complex passwords to be selected. Require separate passwords for system and online accounts. 

Has Your Business Fallen Victim to Fraudsters?

Find out how the Law Offices of William D. Black can help your business if you have experienced any form of business fraud, including fraud between partners or shareholders, insurance fraud, investment fraud, Deceptive and Unfair Trade Practices Act violations, and more. Speak to a Phoenix business litigation attorney for a free consultation of your case by calling 480-680-8519 or contacting us online