As an accounting professional, it is your responsibility to make sure that every client’s data remains confidential and secure. Unfortunately, because of the sensitive data they collect and manage, CPAs and tax accountants are desirable targets for scammers and hackers. To protect yourself and your clients, you need to do everything you can to keep your network secure.
Understanding the Threat
The threat to accounting and tax professionals has become so serious that the IRS has released several memos pertaining to the issue. One such memo was released in mid-April of 2016. In this memo, the IRS warned accounting and tax professionals of a new scam cybercriminals were using to take remote control of accountants’ computers, file tax returns on behalf of the accountants’ clients and redirect the refund to their own accounts.
In another memo from the IRS dated July 2016, tax and accounting professionals were made aware of a new campaign the IRS was launching to combat scammers. The purpose of this campaign is to raise awareness of security threats among tax professionals so that they can prepare accordingly.
Recently, a Nevada CPA firm was sent a resume from someone looking to be “mentored”. The email included a .exe file, that when downloaded launched a ransom ware application that hijacked the computer. Needless to say, you must be careful when it comes to security.
Tips for Protecting Your Network
To protect your business and your clients from security breaches, follow these tips:
When attempting to keep your network safe from security breaches, vigilance is key. Keep an eye out for signs of suspicious activity at all times. If you suspect a breach, act quickly to resolve it.
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