CYBER SECURITY IS NOT JUST ABOUT PROTECTION FROM HACKERS
 
Following up on the AATA treasurer James Pisano’s article in last months’ AATA newsletter, I recently had a very relevant conversation with a member at a discussion group.  This member received an email that, for all intent and purpose, was from her client requesting urgent payment of a sizeable bill to a new supplier.  The email requested the bookkeepers’ immediate attention to the invoice payment, claiming he had forgotten to provide the invoice earlier.  The email was a scam.  On this occasion, the request seemed unusual and the bookkeeper asked further direct questions of the business owner to find out it was fake.
 
Make sure you have safeguards in place to protect yourself from these sorts of scams.  Solid processes and internal controls around payments are absolutely critical in mitigating risks of being caught out.  Ensure that payments are authorised by a second signatory who is connected with the business; this process will assist in picking up when things aren’t right.  Always ask the questions of unusual or extraordinary transactions that fall outside of the usual process.  Be vigilant!
 
The ATO has a scam alerts page on their website that contains information on all of the latest known scams, including screen shots, to maintain public awareness of these current scams.  You can check this out via the following link:
www.ato.gov.au/scamalerts
 
You may also be interested in the ACCC Scamwatch website:
https://www.scamwatch.gov.au/