How can accountancy practices guard against cyber attacks?

November 10th 2023 | Posted by phil scott

Data breaches and cybercriminal activities are nothing new. Each year, companies of all sizes from across the globe lose billions of pounds to cybercriminals who use smart tactics to breach into servers and steal sensitive data.

The global cost of cybercrime or cybercriminal activities will surpass £1.6 trillion by 2020, according to Forbes magazine. This staggering figure bears testimony to the fact that businesses are now more vulnerable than ever, and increasingly being targeted by fraudsters and cybercriminals.

Accountancy firms and accountants, whether small or large, are prime targets for cyber attacks because they have access to sensitive information.
Cybercriminals of today prefer breaching into the financial records and digital books of accountants. Why? Because they know accountants are the ones who hold key financial data, and targeting them only can reveal the entire financial snapshot of the company.

As an accountant, you are responsible for safeguarding your clients’ most critical financial data. In case of any breach, you will be the one who would be held responsible for the loss of critical data as well as the money.

Securing your accounting business against cyber-threats is absolutely mandatory, or else it will drive you out of the accountancy business.

So, as an accountant, you need to introduce and incorporate accounting practices that will protect your business against cybercriminal activities. How do you do it?

Set up an organisational culture that fosters cybersecurity

It is perceived that only large organisations with huge accounting and financial structures need cybersecurity. This is not true in this era at least. Today, even SMEs are vulnerable to cyber-attacks.

This indicates that you need to educate your accountants and build cybersecurity awareness into your business culture to minimise cyberattacks and breaches. Sometimes, fresh accountants and new employees with less experience click on links and emails containing viruses without realizing its repercussions.

Actually, cybercriminals most of the times use these links to break into the computers of accountants that contain sensitive financial information and steal them. Hence, educating your accountants will restraint people from clicking on unnecessary links, blocking cybercriminals to break into your computers.

Conduct cybersecurity assessments and upgrade your servers and computers

The job of an accountant can sometimes be demanding. In addition to the usual accountancy tasks, they may have to make cybersecurity assessments and upgrade their servers and computers alike in order to prevent cybercriminals from stealing important financial data.

Accountants need to understand the vulnerabilities whenever they introduce new software, and system into their organisation. This way they will be able to deter cybercriminal from entering your servers, and computers.

Accounting businesses need to assess their strength and weaknesses and upgrade their bookkeeping and accounting processes to safeguard against cyber-attacks.

Cybercriminals try to steal important financial data such as personal and business details of accountants and their clients, and more. In order to prevent them from breaching into your server, you need to incorporate the best accountancy practices amidst fear of cybercriminal activities.

Are you an accountant looking for your next career move? Register with us. Alternatively, if you are a business owner or HR professional looking to recruit an accountant, contact us.