The Equifax breach two months ago sparked fears that millions of Americans could be harmed by identity theft. In truth, millions of Americans already are harmed by identity theft each year. Small businesses can also be targeted by identity thieves, so it is important to protect yourself. The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) has posted several tips that may help reduce the chances of your business becoming a victim of identity theft. These tips may include:
- Create a protection plan: You can create a plan for protecting your businesses from identity thieves. This could include creating plans to safeguard written and digital documents that contain important information. You could also develop a plan for responding to identity theft if it happens.
- Protect documents and records: You could protect your businesses’ documents and records in several ways. For example, you could use encryption to store important business and customer information. You could also use a micro document shredder for paper records and files. In addition, you should never share financial records with other parties unless you are the one to initiate contact and have verified the parties are legitimate. Phishing emails are a common way identity thieves try to steal information from businesses. This is where they try to trick you or other employees into releasing sensitive information.
- Monitor your business credit reports: You can request credit reports for your business from the credit reporting agencies. Personal credit reports may also show unusual activity. Some businesses and banks offer credit monitoring services. These services may also help prevent identity theft.
- Protect online information: You should be very careful when providing any type of financial information online. Sending your employer identification number (EIN), bank account numbers or other sensitive information through emails can be risky.
Are There Other Ways to Prevent Business Identity Theft?
There are many other ways to prevent business identity theft. For example, your business should take network security (netsec) very seriously. You can firewall and antivirus software to protect yourself from hackers and identity thieves. In addition, you should always install operating system and antivirus updates as soon as possible. These are only a few examples of how to protect sensitive information, so continue following our blog for future updates on this subject.
If you have any questions about business bankruptcy or management, then you should contact the Manalapan business lawyers at Garland & Mason, L.L.C for a consultation.