How to Safeguard your Business Secrets Internally
Security is a top concern for any business.
Protecting yourself from theft is important because the sensitive customer information that you handle is a goldmine for criminals. Stopping outsiders from getting in is always a priority, but lots of businesses forget about their employees.
Obviously you’d like to think that you can trust your employees and, most of the time, you can. But, there are a lot of deceitful people out there and employee theft happens more often than you would think. 75% of people claim to have stolen from their boss at least once – usually amounting to a bit of stationary, but it’s still a worry. Every year, businesses in the US lose around $50 billion through employee theft. If you haven’t thought about protecting your business from insiders, you need to do these things right away.
Keep Good Records
Cash is one of the most common things that employees steal, but others will take small things over time that can add up. Theft of office equipment is fairly easy to keep track of if you keep a good inventory. Most offices don’t bother too much with it, and if there’s a bit of a shortfall it can often go unnoticed because people don’t think it adds up to that much money. But things like printer ink cartridges are actually quite expensive and, over the years, could be eating into your profits quite a bit.
A bit of office equipment is one thing, but if an employee is trying to commit a more serious crime they’ll need access to the office after-hours. If nobody else is around, they can just claim they were doing a bit of extra work in the evening. That’s why it’s a good idea to hire security guards from a company like Cannon Guards. They’ll be able to keep an eye out for any suspicious behaviour from people who are staying late at the office, and their presence should be enough of a deterrent to stop people from trying anything.
One of the best ways to make sure that you aren’t being defrauded is to create written procedures and stick to them rigidly. If you let things slip, it will be much harder for you to pick up any irregularities. If you make sure that all of your employees are up to date with procedures – and are sticking to them – then you’ll spot anything suspicious at once. Have more than one person check things as well. Whilst you might put everything through the accounts person that’s been with you for years, you still can’t be sure that they are honest. Regretfully, it tends to be the longest serving and most trusted employees who try to steal from you.
Most businesses know about the importance of protecting themselves from outside cyber attacks, but somebody on the inside has better access. If they know your security system well, they’ll be able to exploit any loopholes. It’s often better to outsource your cyber security to another company so that nobody in the business can find and take advantage of weaknesses.