5 Ways to Protect Your Small Business from Account Fraud

Corporate account takeover is a form of fraud in which criminals access a company’s financial accounts to carry out unauthorized activities. Corporate account takeover is a type of fraud. Criminals gain access to a company’s financial accounts without permission. They can transfer funds, add fake employees, and steal customer data.

Retrieving the stolen data can be difficult. F&M Bank recommends following these tips to keep your small business safe.

Corporate account takeover is when thieves steal money and information from a business without permission. They can transfer funds, add fake employees to payroll, and take customer information that may be lost forever. F&M Bank recommends following these tips to keep your small business safe.

1.   Educate your employees. You and your employees are the first line of defense against corporate account takeover. Having a strong security program to protect your company and customers is important. Educating employees about warning signs, safe practices, and how to respond to a suspected takeover is also crucial.

2.   Protect your online environment. Protecting your cyber environment is just as important as protecting your cash and physical location.

Do not use unprotected internet connections. Encrypt sensitive data and keep updated virus protections on your computer. Use complex passwords and change them periodically.

3.   Partner with your bank to prevent unauthorized transactions. Talk to your banker about programs that safeguard you from unauthorized transactions. Protect yourself from fraud by using services like Positive Pay. These services offer call backs, device authentication, multi-person approval processes, and batch limits.

These features help to ensure the security of your transactions and protect you from potential fraud. By utilizing these tools, you can safeguard your finances and prevent unauthorized access to your accounts.

4.   Pay attention to suspicious activity and react quickly. Look out for unexplained account or network activity, pop ups, and suspicious emails. If you detect any issues, contact your financial institution right away. Stop all online activity and remove any compromised systems. Keep records of what happened.

5.   Understand your responsibilities and liabilities. The account agreement with your bank will outline the commercially reasonable security measures your business must have.

It is critical that you understand and implement the security safeguards in the agreement. If you don’t, you could be liable for losses resulting from a takeover. Talk to your banker if you have any questions about your responsibilities.

For additional information, give us a call or email us; we will be happy to help. You can also visit the following websites to learn more about how to protect your small business:

•   U.S. Chamber of Commerce: Internet Security Essentials for Business

•   Federal Communications Commission: 10 Cybersecurity Strategies for Small Business

•   Better Business Bureau: Data Security Made Simpler 

•   NACHA – The Electronic Payments Association Corporate Account Takeover Resource Center

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