In the Crime Survey for England and Wales (CSEW) report published in January 2017, the Office for National Statistics revealed a 3% increase in trend data and frauds referred to the police.
However, it also said that many fraud cases go unreported. Fraud can happen to any business, regardless of size or industry. As chartered accountants working closing with small business owners and entrepreneurs across London, we believe it is important to share the top 3 tips on how to protect yourself against fraud.
1. Know your employees
According to forbes.com, some of the most common resume lies are: education, employment dates, job titles and technical skills. While you may be able to spot these lies by asking many questions, many business owners feel that it is harder to assess one’s characters. This is why character reference and background check matters. In addition, organise training courses and teaching your employees about fraud and cyber security on an-going basis. It is crucial to instil the perception that fraudsters will be caught – when employees know that you’re actively preventing fraud, they are less likely to commit fraud in the first place.
2. Safeguard your data
If you have a website, online accounts, emails, mobile phones – then you’re at risk for a cyber attack. Three useful and practical tips relating to this are: regularly changing passwords, having the latest security software, web browser and operating system, as well as using effective spam filters to weed out malware and phishing scams. When it comes to data, one good rule is don’t keep anything that you don’t need. For example, if you don’t deliver to customers, then don’t ask or keep their home address. If you do then destroy the sensitive data once it is of no use to you or outdated.
3. Have a trusted accountant
Are you spending time to scrutinise your bank statements and expense reports? Do you go through reoccurring charges line by line to spot any misconduct? Keeping a watchful eye on your books is key to prevent fraud, so outsource your bookkeeping and accounting functions to a trusted accountant like us. Our team of chartered accountants has been serving entrepreneurs and startups across London for years. Give us a call today, and we can discuss how we can help.
In addition, we also help companies on business finance solutions including funding options and restructuring. Give us a call on 020 7636 9094 today. We look forward to discussing business with you.