In 2017, there were 10,000 cases of business identity theft in the United States. Credit agency Experian reports small and midsize businesses in North America are losing up to $1 billion a year to these imposters. Crimes include tax fraud, credit card use, and website ransom. Is your business protected?
Too often, smaller businesses are targets for fraudsters because thieves realize these companies have fewer resources devoted to protection.
Fortunately, there are several simple and affordable steps you can take to guard your company against identity theft.
Monitoring service: Businesses can enroll in a monitoring service that keeps watch over the company’s credit report. The service will monitor for red flags in credit activity.
EIN: Many entrepreneurs run their businesses under their personal Social Security number. To increase protection, obtain an employer identification number (EIN) and keep personal and business finances separate.
Data protection: If you maintain paper records, use a secure mailbox, shred unneeded documents, and keep sensitive information in locked files. To guard digital files, use firewalls, anti-malware technology, and antivirus software. Change passwords quarterly, using random password generators.