For accountants, security equals client trust. Accountants have the responsibility to evaluate the security implications of new systems. While these conversations can be uncomfortable, they are opportunities to improve the way businesses get served.
People often state concerns about the security of cloud services. It is a very important conversation, and I want to speak openly and honestly about security for financial and accounting information.
In your office, you might have protection against fire and break-ins. However, do you have an ultra-fast, comprehensive, automatic fire suppression system? Do you have 24-hour access control that scans fingerprints and retinas to confirm the identity of everyone who enters?
Probably not. Although both would be welcome features, they are more expensive than you can reasonably afford for your office. You do your best; fire or theft that claimed your client files would be disastrous. It is your duty to protect client information from damage and misuse.
Security Is Constant Diligence—Not a One-Time Job
Security experts seek to reduce risk. The goal of a good security plan is to create the most secure environment possible.
For accountants without a staff of security experts, the ultimate responsibility for how to secure data falls to the person managing the operation. That manager makes purchasing decisions that provide the most security possible. These can be tricky decisions without a lot of quantifiable data to guide her.
I am here to tell you that, when well implemented, cloud systems and software as a service (SaaS) improve your security profile. The increase in return on your security investment goes up astronomically. Let me explain.
Starting with Threat Identification
In order to plan any security, you need to identify the threats you are protecting against. In the case of an accountant’s customer data, the threats fall into two categories:
- Theft: Confidential information falling into the wrong hands
- Loss: Damage or destruction to information, such as fire or data storage failure
I feel that accountants need to look at their data security through the lenses of these two threats and seek to minimize the risk from both. At Entryless, we recognize that we must be vigilant stewards of our customers businesses data. As such, we implement best practices and support ongoing efforts to reduce threats.
Earlier, I mentioned fire suppression and physical access control. That, along with carefully designed data redundancy, reduces dramatically the possibility of physical threats to our data centers. Entryless is able to provide all of that security in the cost of our service—and, in fact, it is also a part of our forever free option.
In comparison, providing these physical protection and data redundancy measures for the data stored in your office—particularly that stored on paper—would be prohibitively expensive. In effect, cloud services like Entryless can lower the physical security requirements of our clients while providing more security features than they could afford on their own.
Addressing Digital Threats
Of course, the perception is that cloud services are at risk for digital intrusion—theft and destruction by malicious hackers. There have certainly been scary stories in the news about successful hacking to data stores and cloud services. What does not make the news as frequently is the constant and ever-innovative attacks on individual computers and networks. In a highly connected world, the digital data at your office can be attacked in any number of ways. These attacks are increasing and getting more sophisticated. Small businesses are certainly not immune. In fact,they are of increasing interest to the thieves who prowl the Internet.
Entryless is able to take advantage of the latest security innovations for our customers businesses. Not only that, but we use outside auditors to make sure that our systems have as much security in place as possible. With redundant cloud architecture, Entryless can constantly employ new techniques to increase our ability to protect your data.
Reducing Threats for Everyone
It is chilling to read about issues like ransomware, in which all the data on a business computer is encrypted and inaccessible until the owner pays the ransom. Companies can completely collapse in the face of ongoing extortion.
These threats are real, and we all need to do everything we can to mitigate them. The hope by digital security experts is that the collective effort of everyone—digital service providers, software providers, technology decision makers, and end users—will raise the cost of such attacks until they are pointless. Attackers are making ROI decisions just like you and I are.
Entryless understands the trust that our thousands of customers put in us. Along with transforming the way businesses manage expenses, we work hard and know that Entryless provides a way to eliminate our customers businesses risk profiles.
Some information about Entryless security practices are available here.