Some business owners fret over not being able to maintain a regular revenue stream.
Others, meantime, worry that their customer service initiatives will not always please some of their clientele. Still others have concerns over hiring the right talent (for those companies that are more than one person shows).
With those factors in mind, what (if anything) has you concerned about your brand moving forward?
Maintaining a Safe Business Identity
In order to keep your business humming along, it is imperative that you never take for granted how even one episode of identity theft can throw your company for a loop.
Stop for a minute and think about how potentially devastating it would be if an identity theft thief got his or her hands on your personal financial information. Imagine all the damage they could do in such a short amount of time.
Now turn that imagination to your business dealings.
If you think an identity theft thief can’t bring your brand to its knees, think again.
If customers see their data stolen and feel like your reactionary time and/or actions are less than acceptable, your business could suffer greatly.
With that being the case, are you making sure your business data (specifically that of your clients) is safe and sound at all times?
If you’ve been a little lax at times, you need to close those loopholes as soon as possible.
There are a number of ways to do this, so don’t feel like it can’t be done.
To start with, make sure you’re operating with a sound Internet server.
For the company providing you with a server, how thoroughly did you vet them when deciding to choose them as your provider?
Your server provider must be operating with a zero tolerance rule for allowing online mishaps to occur. If the server you are working off of is susceptible to being compromised, your company’s data (both personal and that of your customers) can be compromised too.
Are Company Financial Transactions Protected?
Another of area concentration needs to be on the transmission of sensitive customer data, especially financial transactions.
Whether you operate an online store or need a customer’s financial details for other reasons, make sure such transmissions are securely protected. If the information is exposed for even the least amount of time, it can end up in the wrong hands.
Just as you would use a site such as www.lifelock.org to monitor your identity, making sure it is properly being used, the same holds true for all of your business data.
Speaking of exposed data, it is also important that your employees handle customer data (and business financials etc. for that matter) in a professional and protective manner.
Only those employees that truly need to handle such data (accounting, customer call centers etc.) should he having access to it.
Unfortunately, there have been too many stories of business owners discovering that it was actually one or more of their own (including departing workers) employees caught stealing sensitive data.
One way to nip this problem in the bud is laying out the consequences of such actions the day they are hired.
All employees should know under no uncertain circumstances that your business does not for an instance tolerate identity theft amongst its workers. Anyone caught and proven to be guilty of of such crimes could not only lose their job, but also face criminal action by law enforcement.
It is also critical that your business reacts quickly and decisively to any identity theft breaches of your brand, thereby preventing a major hit against your long-term business success.
While you may lose some business due to such attacks, some customers will be more likely to stay with you if they see you are reacting in a professional and prompt manner, this opposed to being unable to handle the matter and/or looking slow to react.
Given the perils identity theft can cause to your brand, preventing it from happening in the first place is always your best line of defense.
When you take such crimes seriously, you stand to be better prepared against them.
Photo credit: BigStockPhoto.com
About the Author: Dave Thomas covers business topics on the web.