Some business entrepreneurs think that only the big-scale multinational companies need identity verification systems or services, the consideration being small businesses do not have as much transactions as giant companies. And as such, they will not be targeted by criminals for fraud or identity theft. Where identity authentication is required for any business engaged in e-commerce document verification services or any form of commercial activity, the scale of business activity is less of an issue to cyber criminals. To the criminals any business regardless of size or scale is a cash generating machine.
The need for identity verification for every business, big or small, is dictated by the fact that online identities are not accurately true and real. If there is no way to verify the identity of say, the account holder, any Dick and Jane can pose as the account holder and run away with purchases which are not authorized by the genuine account holder. This is why businesses with online activities have to invest a sizeable amount in keeping a highly secure and reliable identity authentication protocol to ensure the veracity and genuineness of any transaction made.
In the absence counter checking or validation of identity, businesses are allowing criminals to feast on the vast information they can gain unauthorized access to, leading to increasing cases of fraud and identity theft. Businesses should be conscious of the need to protect customers’ information as well as the information of the business. Identity theft for that matter does not only target the consumers but the business entities as well.
Some reports have it that about $50 billion are lost by businesses to identity theft each year – and that includes small-scale businesses as well. The proficiency of the criminals in manipulating circumstances and situations to get the information they need are reaching a level of sophistication not seen before. As technology advances, so do their skills.
So while the criminals are not wasting their time in doing their research in improving their criminal skills, identity verification systems experts are stepping up their layers of security measures to ensure the tightest protection possible for the information in custody. Small scale businesses can do their part by enhancing their basic security practices and procedures, whether physically or otherwise, and by strengthening the security features of the network hosting the database and transactions.
Companies can restrict access to the computer networks containing sensitive and confidential information to a limited few. Invest in a software or program that will monitor activities on a certain computer that will alert the concerned parties in case of detection of unusual, unauthorized or irregular activities.
Strict in-house security policies should also be enforced. A company wide security policy should clearly identify potential sources of threats or signs of irregularities, customer information protection and non-disclosure, and what courses of action to take in the event of security breach. The security measures and policies to be enforced or implemented will depend on the business’ processes and activities and the level of exposure or risk such vital information are subject to.