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Strategies to Protect Your Business from Identity Theft

Strategies to Protect Your Business from Identity Theft

According to a 2014 study from Javelin Strategy & Research, approximately $16 Billion was stolen from 12.7 million victims in 2013 due to incidents of identity theft. While you might think this is due to reckless practices by everyday consumers, it turns out that some of the identity theft occurs through break-ins at businesses that are heavily paper oriented or by thieves rummaging through company dumpsters looking for precious personal information.

In addition, it turns out those businesses that are not careful about locking up employee or client information can be fined and prosecuted for leaving this information out in the open.

This is why you need to consider a shredder rental on a monthly, quarterly and/or yearly basis and right now, when things slow down for the holiday season, is the perfect time to book yours.

What Information Need to Be Shredded

If you want to keep identity thieves at bay, you need to shred anything that has the following information on it:

  • Company bank account numbers
  • Corporate credit card numbers
  • Client invoices
  • Any documentation that includes your employees full name, home address, personal phone number, date of birth and signature
  • Any documentation with Social Security numbers
  • Employee health care information

What Your Company Needs to Do Daily

  • Check your corporate online bank and investments.
    Report immediately any suspicious activity on the accounts to the financial institution and your management team.
  • As employees apply for positions in your company and share sensitive data, be sure to scan the information and then shred the actual physical documents. Once scanned, be sure to place it in an encrypted file so hackers cannot access the information.
  • If you aren’t sure the thief can do anything with the data, better to be safe than sorry. Scan it and then shred it.

What Your Company Needs to Do Monthly or Quarterly

  • Check all your credit card bills for discrepancies.
    Report and dispute any charges immediately.
  • Standardize on a “shredding day”.
    For example, remind all employees that the second Tuesday of every month the shredder rental will be available for all departments to use.

What Your Company Needs to Do Yearly

  • Once a year, you need to obtain a shredder and high volume scanner rental for several days.
  • When the scanner and shredder are in house, you need to determine:
    • If it is sensitive and needs to be thrown away, then shred it.
    • If it is sensitive and needs to be kept, scan and then shred it or lock it up.

This is also the time of year you may be looking at computer upgrades. If so, you want to hire a shredding company that can also demagnetize and destroy your computer’s hard drive to avoid any lifting of private data off the hard drive.

Why Your Company Needs a Policy Regarding Identity Theft

The Federal Trade Commission has guidelines under the Fair and Accurate Credit Transactions Act which require financial institutions and creditors to establish an identity theft prevention program with rules and guidelines regarding the detection, prevention and mitigation of identity theft. This is commonly called the Red Flag Rule.

The Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act  governs the collection, use and disclosure of personal information in a manner that recognizes the right of privacy of individuals with respect to their personal information and the need of organizations to collect, use or disclose personal information for purposes that a reasonable person would consider appropriate in the circumstances.

The Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health (HITECH) Act promotes the adoption and meaningful use of health information technology.  The HITECH Act addresses the privacy and security concerns associated with the electronic transmission of health information through several provisions that strengthen the civil and criminal enforcement of the HIPAA rules.

The bottom line is you need to have a strong privacy policy in your company to ensure your employees, clients, applicants and consumers are protected from potential identity theft.

Hartford Technology Rental Has the Equipment You Need

We at Hartford Technology Rental have a wide variety of scanner and shredder options available for businesses only – all with the interest of keeping your company records private and protected. Please give us a call at 888.520.5667 for more information!