The threat of identity theft is something which every individual should take seriously, whether they are going online in their spare time or using connected devices to fulfill their professional responsibilities.
However, it can be argued that entrepreneurs are especially vulnerable to this type of cybercrime and should therefore take additional precautions to prevent themselves falling victim to it.
Here is a look at what makes this the case and how relatively simple defensive steps can deliver significant reductions in risk.
The financial implications are dire
Thousands of small businesses and start-ups fail to get past the first year because of money issues. Even those that survive long enough to establish a customer base can fail out of the blue if some significant financial issue arises and stifles their cash flow for a day or two.
Identity theft can be the root of significant disruption, which of course creates the perfect storm of dire circumstances from which entrepreneurs may not be able to extricate themselves.
For example, if a fraudster steals business info and uses it to secure a loan or to complete large transactions on illicitly acquired payment cards, the company could be liable for sky-high sums. Even if the fraud is detected and dealt with, it may harm the businesses reputation and limit its chances of securing credit in the future.
Protection is essential
Entrepreneurs should consider looking into identity Guard, one of the top ID theft protection software, to dissuade the advances of cybercriminals, since failing to do so could bring their fledgling firms grinding to a halt and put paid to their lofty ambitions of business world domination.
Even if you manage to avoid data breaches yourself, if customers have their details compromised then their information could be used to carry out fraudulent transactions with your organization. This will result in chargebacks as banks seek to recoup improperly used payment cards, which in turn could cost your company quite a lot of cash and even lead to its ability to process transactions being frozen or revoked altogether.
Deploying automated software and systems to detect and prevent fraud through identity theft is the answer, even if the upfront cost may give you pause. It is far better to splash out on suitable robust cybersecurity measures now, rather than having to manage the costs of fraud that is made possible by your complacency further down the line.
Training can help
Another thing which entrepreneurs can do to protect their businesses from identity theft is to make sure that they and anyone they employ is adequately trained and educated in the threats they face and understands the best practices for cyber safety.
Human error is a top cause of data loss, so making sure that everyone involved in an organization knows how to choose a secure password, avoid falling for phishing scams and stop sensitive data being left unencrypted on portable devices is vital.
It is impossible for entrepreneurs to completely eliminate the threat of identity theft, but even making minor changes can dramatically reduce the likelihood of it occurring.