16 May 2017
With the hacking of the NHS computers currently in the news, it’s only natural to start worrying about the security of your own business and how this can affect important financial information.
Traditional accounting does leave you vulnerable to cyber-attacks if your computer software is not kept up to date and maintained. This is because you need to store files relating to your accounts on your computer. Whether that’s in the form of excel spreadsheets, invoices or receipts. So, my advice to you would be to always perform the following;
· Have a cloud back up of all your files which updates in real time. This type of software is easily available and either free or very low cost. Programmes like Google Drive and DropBox are easy to use and install.
· As another layer of security have weekly back up of all your files to an external hard drive. Again, these are relatively low cost. A typical hard drive on Amazon will cost you approximately £40 for 1TB of storage.
· Install and maintain security and anti-virus software on your computer. This may seem like a cost that is easy to skip but the cost of dealing with an attack will always be much greater.
Another alternative would be to consider moving to cloud accountancy. Which ultimately provides a much higher level of security for your business. Being on the cloud means;
· Your backups are kept up to date – Online backups are updated throughout the day, every day, and stored in multiple secure locations.
· Encrypted data is stored securely – Data is encrypted using industry-standard data encryption, multiple layers of firewalls are in place, all access to our data centres and servers is controlled and monitored 24/7, and we perform regular security audits.
· Your data is there when you need it – Data is replicated between data centres in different locations so that its up and running most of the time.
· Tightly controlled information access
o You control information access – No one has access to your organisation’s data unless you invite them. You control who and what users can see and do.
o Extra security at log in – You are provided with two-step authentication to better protect your account. Access to your account requires your password plus a unique code generated by an app on your smartphone.
o Personal information stays private – Your personal or financial information is not shared unless you give permission. You can, for example, choose to let a member of the support team view your data when you want help.
o Safeguards for data stored in the UK – Top-tier, third-party services located in the UK to host online and mobile services. This means that personal information is transferred to servers in the UK. To satisfy the requirements relating to the transfer of data we have agreements in place with each of our hosting providers that use European Commission model contract clauses.
Whilst switching to cloud accountancy may seem like a big step, it really couldn’t be easier with one of cloud accountancy packages. Click here for more information on cloud accountancy and the great packages we offer.
Ian Rodgers – Director