You hear reminders fairly often not to become the victim of a scam. Some scams target the elderly, travel scams, tax scams, and many more that people fall victim to every day. But you may not be aware that cons aren’t solely focused on individuals.
A whole con artist market focuses on luring businesses to share information and finances. Fortunately, there are ways you can protect yourself from getting scammed in the first place and commercial insurance policies to help you recover if you do fall victim.
The following examples are not exhaustive, so remember to watch out for red flags and trust your gut if something seems off.
When you’re busy and trying to be as efficient as possible, it’s easy to get in a groove and pay invoices.
But scammers are even more technologically advanced than that. For example, if hackers breach someone else’s system, they can edit emails so that even though the invoice is legitimate, the bank account information is not.
Invoicing apps and programs make the process efficient, so you must carefully notice details when using them.
Someone could copy your business website and choose a URL close enough to yours that most people wouldn’t notice. Then, when your loyal customers return to do business with you, they could inadvertently get taken advantage of.
Some cyber attacks are obvious attacks from the start. But other attacks start more slyly in the form of phishing emails.
Phishing attacks are usually targeted at employees. Often, the emails they send seem legitimate. So, your employee may share information that the hacker can use to attack your website or steal from your customer data.
Office Supplies Scam
Offices tend to need supplies, so scammers take advantage of that by delivering supplies that weren’t ordered and supplying an invoice. If the person receiving the “order” isn’t the one who does the ordering, they may not realize that the shipment is unrequested.
Another layer in this scheme is that the scammer will call pretending to be someone familiar with the company and confirm the address. Then, they’ll use that address confirmation as proof that the business ordered the office supplies.
The tax deduction you can claim for office supplies won’t make up for unnecessary spending.
Avoiding Scams Targetting Your Small Business
You are the best defense your business has against scams. So keep yourself and those who work for you educated on the classic and up-and-coming popular scams. And set safeguards in place.
Cyber Security, Education, and Insurance
Most companies need an online presence to succeed, but that presence also puts you at risk for cyber-attacks and phishing scams. So make sure that you use antivirus software designed for businesses.
Hold regular cyber security training for your employees. You can be extremely careful online, but if your employees aren’t as diligent, your business will be vulnerable to cyber-attacks.
Cyber insurance is one of the essential types of coverage every business should consider. If you fall victim to a ransomware attack or data breach, you could lose your income for an extended time and be liable for your client’s identity security. Without insurance, those losses could put you out of business.
Comparing cyber insurance providers can help you find the best company for your needs in a similar way that comparing car insurance companies can help you find the best coverage for accidents.
Create Clear Processes
Make sure everyone has clear roles and responsibilities. Those roles can help improve security. For example, if the same people who make orders also receive orders, there will be a lower chance of paying for unordered supplies because the recipient will know they weren’t ordered.
The person responsible for paying invoices should take extra steps to confirm routing and account numbers, especially with new service or supply providers. For example, once clients are established, your company should contact the provider to verify if those numbers change.
Protecting your business from scams and cyber attacks is critical to keeping your business operational in today’s world. The time and financial investment are worth it.