10 Tips to Increase Your Accounting Firm’s Data Security

Posted by Cedric Joshua Martinez
May 04, 2020
Facebook LInkedin Twitter

Accounting firms are ideal targets for hackers who want to gain access to sensitive financial information. 

pexels-pixabay-39584 (1)

To combat the rising frequency and complexity of cyber-attacks, accounting firms must stay one step ahead and be agile in adjusting their security protocols. 

In this blog post, we will explore ten strategies that can protect and enhance the data security of your accounting firm. 


Tips to Increase Your Accounting Firm’s Data Security 

Here are some tips on how you can increase your accounting firm’s data security: 


1. Educate your employees about the importance of cybersecurity 

The first thing you should do is convince your employees of the importance of data security. Your employees, especially your partners or managers, should be looped in the process of maintaining your accounting cyber security for them to share the responsibility of protecting your firm. You can craft a security awareness program and give out handouts to discuss your firm’s process on information security. 


2. Be cautious when using email 

Hackers can easily get through emails; thus, extra precautions are necessary. Make sure all your emails are encrypted for an added layer of protection. Sending emails to officemates and clients is inevitable, but when sending documents with classified information such as financial data and passwords, use portals instead. You should also be wary of email links, even though it was sent by a person you know. It never hurts to double-check for security. 


3. Have the right people to help you even if it means getting outside help 

Protecting classified information from your firm and your client is not a task you should give to just anyone from your company.  

When you outsource certain tasks, for example, you should hire someone who knows the regulatory requirements to ensure your data is protected. Knowledge of the security processes should also be partnered with constant documentation of your financial records. All of these requirements can be met when you outsource the right person. 


4. Always update your software programs 

From accounting to antivirus software programs, make sure you are always updated, even though it means sacrificing a little bit of convenience. Some programs may stop supporting operating systems with critical security when not updated regularly; thus, you should stay on top of the software updates to increase your accounting firm’s cyber protection. 


5. Create a cyber-attack response plan 

In the event of a cyber-attack, your employees should know what to do and who to contact. Create a step-by-step guide to how your employees should respond to a cybersecurity crisis and lessen its potential damage to your firm.  

Also, list down your company’s authorization policies, state or federal laws they should take note of, and the supervisors or clients to inform in case of data breach. 


Read: Why Performing Security Audits Should Be Every Company's Priority 


6. Implement Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA)

Enforce multi-factor authentication for all employees who have access to your firm's systems and sensitive data. MFA adds an extra layer of security by requiring users to provide multiple forms of identification, such as a password and a unique verification code sent to their mobile device. This prevents unauthorized access even if passwords are compromised. 


7. Use firewall to secure your network

A firewall acts as a barrier between your accounting firm's internal network and the external internet. Implement a firewall to block unauthorized access to your network and regularly update it with the latest security patches. By doing so, you can stay ahead of potential threats and safeguard your valuable data. 


8. Limit access to sensitive data

Restrict access to sensitive data to those who need it. Implement user access controls and regularly review and update user privileges to prevent unauthorized access to sensitive information. 


9. Implement an employee offboarding process

Once the employees are no longer part of the company, it is crucial to implement a comprehensive offboarding process. By setting up a checklist to remove terminated employees from all applications and systems, you can effectively protect your company from potential data breaches. 


10. Invest in insurance

Other firms may ignore this additional layer of security; however, when your company does fall prey to a cyber-attack, an insurance can protect your finances. Insurance covers the cost of cleaning up the breached data and the services of crisis management to limit the damage to your company’s reputation. 


Read Next: Five Steps in Boosting Finance and Accounting Cyber Security 


The Bottom Line <H2>  

Implementing these ten tips might help you to significantly enhance the data security and safeguard sensitive information of your accounting firm.  


Remember, prioritizing data security not only protects clients' information but also strengthens the firm's reputation in the industry. In addition, staying one step ahead of cyber criminals and ensuring the security of an accounting firm requires a multi-faceted approach. 


Are you seeking a reliable accounting outsourcing provider that places utmost importance on robust security measures?  

Consider outsourcing with D&V Philippines. Our accountants utilize cutting-edge, cloud-based accounting software, ensuring streamlined and efficient financial management. In addition, our dedicated in-house IT team diligently oversees the proper implementation of robust cybersecurity practices throughout the organization.  Get in touch with us today to learn more about our outsourcing services and cybersecurity measures.  


You can also download our Business Analytics whitepaper to learn more on how you can leverage data to drive your business forward.  

New Call-to-action

This post was first published on 04 May 2020 and edited on 29 February 2024. Edited by: Angelica Garcia 


Our Outsourcing: How to Make it Work guide explores how you can utilize accounting and finance outsourcing to drive growth to your business and add value to your processes.