The crime of fraud is one that all businesses, especially small businesses, are exposed to. According to an Association of Certified Fraud Examiners (ACFE) study, small businesses with less than 100 staff reported 28% of all fraud instances. This shows that it is vital for small businesses to implement effective measures to prevent being vulnerable to fraud. Here are four ways you can protect your business.
Protect your bank accounts
As a small business owner, it is essential to separate your accounts from that of your business. Suppose a fraudulent party acquires the details of your account. In that case, if the business accounts are separated, the criminal cannot gain access to that belonging to the business. Your business’s financial accounts are secure. For credit cards, you can consult your provider for fraud detection and prevention measures such as spending limits and tracking to prevent fraudsters from making detrimental purchases with your business’s card.
You should also ensure that you keep your bank details safe. An effective way of doing this is by ensuring you do not make your card easily accessible. Be sure not to save your card details on insecure platforms and consult your bank for an automatic logout feature to prevent unauthorized parties from accessing your bank account.
Protect your computer systems
Criminals are knowledgeable about computer systems. This means that they have the right skills to identify loopholes and breach your digital systems. Therefore you should consider implementing effective cybersecurity solutions. Install a robust firewall to guard your computers against malware. You can also ensure that tough-to-break passwords and consider changing them periodically. You can also use other security measures such as two-factor authentication to provide maximum security. In addition, ensure daily or weekly data backups. You can consider automation solutions like OnPay Solutions, which helps you gain total control of invoices and payments and reduce your fraud risks.
Frequently audit high-risk areas
Auditing your business and transaction is vital for preventing fraud. It would be helpful to routinely audit your business areas dealing with cash, refunds, product returns, and inventory management. These, together with your accounting and booking functions, are hotspot areas for fraud. Focusing on the aforementioned areas can add tremendous value to your business and support strategic decision-making to build a solid risk culture. It is better to make these audits “unplanned” to discover fraudulent activities.
Check every detail
The fraudulent activity could take place in any part of your business. Therefore, it is vital to check every aspect of your business when there are issues concerning security loopholes or breaches- no matter how small. Business owners become complacent when they have long employees or get overwhelmed by other “important” business tasks that they fail to check on the “small” details of the business. Your staff may not be as trustworthy as you would like, and to prevent your business from falling victim to such problems, you must check small details to detect fraud early.
The tips above should help protect your small business from various crimes and keep it from suffering the consequences of a breach.