Over the past year, instances of cyber-fraud against businesses have been on the rise.
How do cyber-thieves operate? They typically gain control of your business bank account by stealing your valid online banking credentials. Once they have your log-in information, they access your account, just as you would, and initiate funds transfers - moving funds from your account to theirs.
What are some steps experts suggest you take to protect your business computers?
- Employ a security provider to install commercial anti-virus, desktop firewall and anti-spy software on all computers. Keep it up-to-date.
- Update your security software; download and install security updates or patches to operating systems and browsers as soon as they are available.
- Adjust browser settings to prompt your users whenever a website tries to install a new program or "Active-X" control.
- Use a dedicated computer to conduct your online banking and payments activity. This computer should not be used for general web browsing and social networking.
- Never access bank accounts at a wireless internet cafe or public wi-fi hot spot.
- Be suspicious of email purporting to be from a financial institution, government department or other agency, especially if it requests account information, account verification or banking access credentials.
- Look out for changes in websites. Is the site asking you for more information than normal?
- Avoid opening file attachments or clicking on web links in suspicious emails.
- Educate your employees.
- Create a strong password with at least eight characters. Use mixed case letters, numbers and special characters.
- Use a different password for each website that you access. Change your password frequently.
- Prohibit the use of "shared" user names and passwords for online banking systems.
- Monitor and reconcile your accounts daily.
If you see unauthorized activity in your bank accounts or suspect your business has been the victim of fraud, cease all activity on the computer system that you suspect may be compromised. Immediately contact
the bank if you see unauthorized activity in your accounts. File a police report and provide the facts and circumstances surrounding the loss.
For more tips on avoiding fraud and identity theft, visit the 1st Source security page