Combating Online Fraud in Small Businesses

The criminals of today are not using bolt-cutters and crowbars to do their stealing. Today, they are using laptops and WiFi. And while you may think that big businesses are their main target, in fact, many of them see small business as the easiest target as they are not as well protected. Therefore, it is especially important that you take steps to combat online fraud to make sure that you are not at risk. In this blog post, we will provide you with just a few of the main points that will give you a helping hand with regards to online security.

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Check the Credentials of New Customers

How closely are you looking into the credentials of new customers? Are you using products like https://www.jumio.com/trusted-identity/netverify/ or something similar? If the answer is no, you need to do something to address this problem at the earliest possible opportunity. And if they are trying to place a large first order with your business, this should start ringing alarm bells with your company.

What Goods Are Being Ordered?

You may have verified the identity of your new customer, but you still need to be wary if they are buying goods of a high value which can easily be resold once again. And you should certainly be careful if large numbers of the same item are being ordered.

Verify the Delivery Address

The next thing to double check is that the delivery address is valid. One of the most common tricks for fraudsters is to get businesses to deliver to addresses which turn out not to be valid. As a general rule of thumb, PO boxes should always be avoided as these are much more difficult to trace and verify.

Debit or Credit Card Checking

You obviously don’t want to accept orders which are coming from a stolen debit or credit card, so you need to take steps to check that this is not the case where possible. Verify whether the purchaser and the cardholder information both match up. And if the customer is trying to split the cost across several cards, this may be an indication that they are stolen.

Part of the World

Next up, it is worth looking into where in the world the order is being placed from and delivered to. Is it a part of the world that your business would normally sell to? Be especially wary if the answer to this question is no.

The Great Firewall

Having an up to date firewall should be one of the cornerstones of your online safety, so make sure that you are using a trusted system and also work to keep it properly updated.

Many of the above points don’t necessarily mean that fraud is taking place, but they could well be an indication that something is amiss. Do everything that you can to verify the identity of the individual or customer that you are about to do business with. It could end up being invaluable.