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How to Prevent Business Identity Theft

Can Identity Theft Affect Your Business? How to Prevent Business Identity Theft Identity theft is becoming more and more common in the digital age, with around 7% of American adults affected each year. Amid the huge data breaches from the likes of Yahoo! and LinkedIn, a serious and growing issue is being swept under the rug–business identity theft. This underexposed crime is particularly concerning, because it tends to target small and medium-sized businesses more often, since they don’t have the same security mechanisms as their larger rivals. What Is Business Identity Theft? In its most simple sense, identity theft occurs when someone pretends to be someone else, usually for nefarious means. In the business context, it usually involves a thief accessing a business’s sensitive information, often through social engineering, and then using that to impersonate the business for financial gain. Thieves may steal credentials from unwitting employees or even falsify records to gain access. Business identity theft can involve many different scams, such as criminals opening new accounts under the name of the business, draining funds from existing accounts, and even establishing lines of credit for fraudulent transactions. Business identity theft can be tremendously destructive. It can ruin a business’s credit rating and make it much more difficult to access loans. Companies don’t just have to worry about the theft of their own assets, but also the theft of any personal data from customers. Data breaches can be damaging to a brand’s reputation and expensive to deal with.  Why Are Businesses Being Targeted? Business identity theft is becoming popular with criminals because there are several characteristics that make it...