Sometimes referred to as account takeover, corporate ID theft is not just an attempt to take a company’s money. Rather, this is a situation where someone unlawfully obtains your company’s tax ID number, articles and corporate officer names in an attempt to impersonate an officer of your company and open accounts – including loans, credit cards, etc. – in your company’s name and start issuing checks and payments as if they are you. Some even open “offices” in the company’s name and start receiving shipments!
With the speed of technology, businesses can fall victim very quickly. Here are some ways to protect your company:
- Keep corporate officer information off your website.
- Lock down your logo on your website to discourage copying of your logo.
- Adopt training within your company regarding security of all private information.
- Know where corporate documents are and who has access – and be sure staff knows never to release them to anyone outside the company.
- Run your own D&B or UCC search occasionally – similar to running your personal credit — to be sure there are no negative marks against you.
- Have fraud tools in place at your bank, the first line of defense if fake check stock is created against your company.
These are still tough economic times, and many people are looking to take advantage of a company’s supposed “deep pockets” for personal gain. Employing these tools will go a long way in making your company a difficult target for corporate identity theft.
Jay Mack is president and chief executive officer of Hartland-based Town Bank.