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Is Your CPA Firm Safe From Cyber Attacks?

Cybersecurity threats can happen to anyone and any type of organization. CPA/Accounting firms are not exempt from this threat. An article by Lisa Traina on http://www.aicpa.org explores the security issues facing CPA's today. According to Traina, there are five threats that CPA's should be aware of.

  1. Ignorance: No matter how big or small your organization is, you are at risk! The size of your company or the strength of your IT Department does not determine if you are susceptible to a cyberattack.
  2. Passwords: In 2014 the most common passwords were 123456 and password. Passwords should be a combination of numbers, letters & characters. Furthermore, you should not use the same passwords for multiple accounts. Mobile devices should also be secured with a passcode.
  3. Phishing: Phishing emails usually ask the reader to click a link/attachment, which then allow hackers to steal information or infect systems with malware. Phishing emails can come from any source and some may look familiar such as your bank or charitable organization. It is important to make your employees aware of phishing schemes and teach them to think twice before opening an unknown link or attachment.
  4. Malware: Malware is intentionally put on a computer system by a hacker unbeknownst to the user. This allows the hacker to steal any information that they deem desirable.
  5. Vulnerabilities: To thwart off a malware attack, it is critical that your organization stay up-to-date on software and product upgrades and patches. This includes Adobe Flash, Java and other applications that are not covered in the software "fixes."

Now that you know the risks of a cybersecurity attack, let's focus on what you can do to prevent this from happening to your organization. Entrust Datacard's IdentityGaurd is an award-winning software-based authentication solution that secures many financial institutions, enterprises and governments worldwide. IdentityGaurd uses transparent authenticators to validate users without day-to-day involvement.

Elliott Data Systems is a local partner of Entrust Datacard, and for more information on two factor authentication programs and digital credentials, contact Elliott Data at www.elliottdata.com or 1-888-345-8511.

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