How to Prevent: Business Identity Theft
Professionals and investors are always hot targets for identity thieves as they have an extensive amount of money (and credit lines) that can be compromised. Whether you build websites, buy stocks, or speculate on other online investments, there are certain extra security steps you should take.
80) Designate a work or investment computer
Any time you have a lot of money or digital assets at stake, the security of your computer becomes of the utmost importance. This is why it’s worth spending even just $300 to pick up a new computer for your financial matters. After doing so, make sure to implement a quality anti-virus program and make other changes to make it more secure. Although, you could always buy a Chromebook or Macbook as both are known for keeping viruses out.
81) Get advice from BusinessIDTheft.org
We typically don’t recommend other websites that advise on identity theft protection, but for businesses, BusinessIDTheft.org is the best resource around. This website gives you access to endless information on how identity thieves attack businesses, how it can be prevented, and what can be done after an attack happens. We support this website as it is backed by many high-profile corporations and organizations, including the Identity Theft Protection Association and the National Association of Secretaries of State, as well as many others.
82) Keep your computer physically safe
Beyond the pass protection and anti-virus layers comes an even more important factor, which is the physical safety of your computer. You might not be an infamous investor or website builder, but you never know where your ventures will take you. It’s easy to locate the exact address of a domain owner, so even if you just have a blog that turns wildly successful, you could be targeted in real life. This is why high profile names like Edward Snowden (CIA whistle-blower) used the Tails operating system. With the pull of a USB stick, all the computer contents were no longer accessible.
83) Invest in Whois domain privacy protection
Since the Whois results for a domain registrant show the person’s full name, mailing address, and phone number, it’s best if this can be kept private. Some domain registrars offer free Whois privacy for the first year of a domain’s registration. Others will charge upwards of $10 per year for this service. Either way, it is something you will want to implement to make sure there is as little identifying information about you on the Web as possible.
84) Be careful what you disclose online
It’s standard to discuss your investment interests on the Web with others like you. Whether this is done on a domain investing forum, a cryptocurrency IRC chat room, or otherwise, your security is still important. As such, you should only access and communicate on such websites through a VPN protected connection. Further, it’s recommended that you attempt to minimize the amount of linking between your online accounts and your offline identity.
85) Watch out for property rental schemes
When looking to invest, whether in a rental, rent-to-own, or purchase, there are a few ways the landlord or seller could defraud you. One of those involves getting you to complete a rental application over the Internet. This allows the other party to receive a lot of personal identifying information about you without even having to meet. While this paperwork should always be done in person, the excuses to avoid doing so usually make the scam obvious. To further check the authenticity of a property offer, just go to Google Images, hit the camera symbol, and enter the image URL.
86) Buy in the best identity theft protection
While mentioned closer to the start of the list, it’s essential to emphasize on the importance of identity theft protection. If you run a work computer, or if a lot of money is managed online, you could face a serious out-of-pocket loss because of an identity theft attack. Yet, this can be mitigated by using a rock-solid identity theft service.
We have covered all the top players in the industry, and can confidently state that the absolute best value you can find comes from Identity Guard Total Protection. Remember, you are really paying for an identity theft prevention program and that’s worth it’s weight in gold. But, the kicker, you can wipe the entire cost of a Costco membership by investing in this particular plan!
87) Protect your business from fraudulent transactions
Whether by stealing banking details or through the use of spyware, a fraudster could potentially commit identity theft to make fraudulent transfers from your business’s bank account. This makes for a huge out-of-pocket loss and usually the funds are never recovered. To prevent this, make sure you have the appropriate security and verification in place for such transfers. Two-factor authentication is a good start, and it can be used to enforce two agreeing parties to push any transfer forward. Further, your bank might offer a multi-authentication method that involves unique tokens, faxing, and many other types of verification procedures.
88) Send checks with Positive Pay
Paper checks have always been a serious concern when it comes to identity theft. Now, American professionals have the ability to pay by check through Positive Pay. This system makes it possible for you to state what checks were sent out, meaning anyone cashing a check from you must be authorized to do so first. If a check does not match, but it’s a legit payment, your company can get an image of it by fax to manually approve. As forged checks are always a possible financial risk for businesses, this service can be a true lifesaver and is essentially a form of liability insurance.
89) Keep all business paperwork locked up
Your checks serve as tools for identity thieves, so your company’s checkbook should be kept hidden at all times. The same is true for other types of business paperwork, such as deposit slips and endorsement stamps. Anything that ties to your checking account, to your own identity, and anything else that identifies sensitive information should be stored securely. A lockbox or safe is the best bet, as it’s easy to break into a locked filing cabinet.