Workplace identity theft is a growing problem. To combat the issue, we need to hone in on how the thieves are obtaining our private information.
The most common victims are little organizations with fewer than a hundred employees, in line with the most recent study by the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners Report. Typically, smaller companies have fewer controls, limited policies, and less training/coaching on handling private information than larger companies.
Handling personal, sensitive & confidential information properly is critical and the law. Inadequate business practices might result in liability suits and loss of consumers.
What follows is some tips to shield your customers, staff, & company:
Shredding all unneeded client and proprietary paperwork is not just good practice; it is the law. Using a reputable shredding company takes all the worry off your shoulders and can give you peace of mind and security.
Be wary of con-artists–if someone calls or emails asking for private information, claiming that they are from the IRS, do not give it out. The IRS states that they only ask for that information by mail. There has been a huge rise in this approach over the past 12 months.
Be mindful of employee access to information. A lot of identity theft occurs when employees give (sell) sensitive information to these crooks. In a recent case starting in Florida, a human resources worker was paid $3,000 for co-workers personal information. These thieves used this information to obtain a driver’s license, open a new credit card, and/or trick a retailer into giving them the credit card number.
Spot check to make sure everyone is following the policy & procedures on handling sensitive information.
Another best practice is splitting duties. By splitting & separating the information that employees can access, you cut down on the chances an employee will be able to sell the information without someone noticing.
Train everybody in the company on correct ways to handle, track, and eliminate sensitive data: Do not leave this to chance. Put together a training program for handling this information.
Create a hotline for reporting suspected deception: Have a safe way for honest employees to report abuse.
HV Shred can help keep you compliant and lessen the burden when handling consumer’s sensitive information. Visit www.hvshred.com