7 Cybersecurity Best Practices That Enhance Fraud Prevention

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Effective fraud detection and prevention have always been critical aspects of information protection. The problem is that fraud prevention is becoming increasingly difficult online. As a result, the RCMP noticed a 40% increase in cyber fraud between 2021 and 2022, a number that is expected to continue to rise.

“Many financial crimes are preventable, especially over the internet. Education and a strong policy are your keys to a more secure IT environment.”Balaji Selvaraj, Director of IT, Sunco Communication & Installation

Fraud risks are not exclusive to financial institutions. Any business that holds high-value data or is perceived as having a decent amount of money could become a target. Therefore, training yourself and your employees to identify fraud and follow cybersecurity best practices is your greatest defence.

To help you get started, we’ll show you our best cybersecurity tips to help you combat fraud. We’ll also explore what your biggest risks may be and explore what that means for your daily operations.

What Are Your Biggest Fraud Risks?

Fraud risks vary widely across industries. Therefore, your first step towards a fraud prevention strategy is identifying your biggest potential risks. Here is what you might need to look out for based on your industry. Please note that this is not an exhaustive list.

Industry

Risks

Hospitality
  • Payment fraud through fake bookings
  • Data theft from insecure public Wi-Fi networks on your premise
Healthcare
  • Identity theft via stolen patient records
  • Ransomware attacks on critical healthcare systems
Education
  • Phishing attacks targeting students and/or staff
  • Unauthorized access to sensitive information in school systems
Retail
  • Credit card fraud through online transactions
  • Account takeover from leaked customer data
Real Estate
  • Fraudulent property listings
  • Email compromise scams targeting transaction details
Technology
  • Intellectual property theft
  • Spear phishing attacks aimed at accessing sensitive company information

How to Detect Frauds

Watch For Suspicious Activity in Accounts

Keep an eye on accounts for any unusual activity, such as unexpected transactions or sudden changes in account details. By recognizing these signs early, you can initiate an investigation faster and uncover any fraudulent activities sooner.

Scrutinize Inconsistencies in Documents

Examine documents for any inconsistencies, such as mismatched signatures or unusual transaction dates. Inconsistencies may indicate attempts to forge documents or conduct unauthorized transactions.

Be Wary of Unusual Requests

Be cautious of requests for sensitive information via email or phone, especially if the requestor urges secrecy or haste. Always verify the authenticity of emails, phone calls, or messages claiming to be from clients or colleagues.

Monitor Unusual Behaviour

Keep an eye on unusual employee behaviour, such as reluctance to take vacations or over protection of work. Such behaviours can sometimes be signs of internal fraud. Observing and investigating these behaviours can help detect fraud within the organization. However, do be careful not to become too paranoid or to breach employee privacy in these efforts.

Analyze Financial Patterns

Regularly review financial records for patterns that deviate from the norm, such as sudden increases in expenses or unusual payment requests. Abnormal patterns can hint at underlying fraudulent activities. Early detection of these patterns allows for timely investigations.

Listen to Customer & Vendor Feedback

Pay attention to feedback from customers and vendors that suggest discrepancies or unauthorized actions. They can offer outside perspectives on irregularities that internal processes might miss. This feedback can be a valuable early warning of fraudulent activity.

 

7 Cybersecurity Practices That Help With Fraud Prevention

1. Train Employees on Security Protocols

Provide regular training for your team on recognizing and responding to fraudulent schemes. Educated employees are your first line of defense against fraud. Training helps them recognize the signs of fraud and understand the correct actions to take.

2. Implement Strong Password Policies

Establish policies that require complex passwords and mandate regular updates. This approach makes it harder for fraudsters to crack passwords. Strong, frequently changed passwords protect accounts from unauthorized access.

3. Update & Patch Systems Regularly

Keep all software and systems up to date with the latest security patches. Fraudsters exploit vulnerabilities in outdated software to gain unauthorized access. In fact, 2022 saw the exploitation of vulnerabilities in outdated software surpassing credential theft as the most common method of gaining unauthorized access to protected data.

4. Enable Multi-Factor Authentication

Activate multi-factor authentication (MFA) for all critical systems and data access. MFA adds an additional layer of security, requiring a second form of identification beyond just a password. This measure greatly reduces the chances of unauthorized access, even if a password is compromised.

5. Encrypt Sensitive Data

Encrypt sensitive data, both in transit and at rest. Encryption transforms data into a coded format that is unreadable without the correct decryption key. By encrypting data, you protect it from being intercepted or stolen by fraudsters.

6. Conduct Regular Audits

Regularly audit all online financial and operational processes to identify any discrepancies or anomalies. Audits can uncover hidden patterns of fraud that might not be immediately obvious. This proactive approach allows you to correct issues before they become significant problems.

7. Monitor & Analyze Network Traffic

Continuously monitor network traffic for unusual patterns or activities that could indicate a breach. Use tools that analyze this traffic to detect potential threats early. Monitoring helps in identifying suspicious activities quickly, allowing for prompt fraud prevention and detection.

Get The IT Help You Need to Prevent Fraud in…

Edmonton Cranbrook Red Deer

 

Stay Secure Against Evolving Fraud Risks With Cybersecurity Professionals

Keeping your risk management procedures up-to-date with evolving threats can be challenging. Yet, it’s critical to do so. Falling behind could put your organization at risk of fraud losses and information theft.

Sunco Communication & Installation provides proactive managed cybersecurity solutions that can help you prevent unneeded financial loss. Our team conducts real-time network monitoring processes and can assist you with anti-fraud cyber awareness training for your employees.

Contact us today to get started.

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