Thursday, September 27, 2012

SMB's Suffer High Incidents of Bank Fraud

Guardian Analytics and the Ponemon Institute have combined to publish the results of their  Business Banking Trust Study. The study underscores the battle against increasingly sophisticated bank fraud campaigns targeted at small to medium sized businesses.
Some of the reports highlights:
  • 56% of businesses experienced a bank fraud attack in the last 12 months. Of those that experienced fraud, 61% were victimized more than once. 75 percent of the businesses participating in the study experienced online account takeover and/or online fraud.
  • In 78% of fraud cases, banks failed to catch fraud involving the illegal transfer of funds or other nefarious practices such as information identity theft.
  • 38% of respondents said they access their company's banking accounts from mobile devices including smart phones and tablet PCs like the iPad, compared to only 23% in 2010.
Legally, business accounts aren't protected against losses due to fraud, as consumers accounts are. As a result, small businesses are forced to absorb excessive losses resulting from their business bank accounts being fully drained and unable to recover any of the losses.

What are can you do to avoid being a victim?  The follow are best security practices
  1. When you access your bank account online, do it from a computer that is NOT used to access the Internet or email.  You should have a dedicated computer that accesses only your bank account and nothing else.  As an alternative, you can configure a "virtual" computer using VMware Workstation.  This  creates an environment similar to having a separate computer without having to purchase separate computer hardware.   Ask Avisotek for more details or your computer service provider 
  2. Change your bank account password every 30 days
  3. Make sure your computer has a firewall that filters incoming and outgoing network communications.  The Anti Virus software should perform "full scans" every day.  Security updates to Windows XP or Windows 7 should be performed weekly.  
  4. The computer you access your bank account online should be used for business purposes only.  DO NOT download and install games, wallpaper, music, weather bug, desktop themes, etc.