Nowadays, most accountants are looking to share their documentation with clients through use of cloud software. The only problem is there are thousands of solutions out there, so it can be daunting to find the right one.
It’s important to do your research. You need to ensure that your documentation will be protected to the highest level for legal and compliance issues, as well as peace of mind for yourself and your clients.
A 2015 report from SkyHigh Networks shared some statistics on data is being shared and stored in the cloud, including:
12.8% of shared files at work are visible to the whole company.
28.3% are shared with individuals and business partners.
6.1% are shared with personal email accounts.
2.6% are publicly accessible on the Internet.
9.2% of all documents shared externally contain sensitive information.
These statistics suggest that, whilst companies are embracing the cloud, more steps need to be taken in order to prevent the event of a security breach and losing data.
Accountants need instant access to documentation for clients, from within a private environment. This can be achieved by using bank-grade secure, file sharing and collaboration software like Clinked. These cloud-based solutions offer a wide range of security capabilities to protect your financial and client information, including:
Additional extra security measures to access your account
In order to prevent unauthorised access to your software, avoid using easy to guess passwords, including your birth date, your name and even the word ‘password’. Use a complex password, with special characters and numbers. You should also use two-factor authentication and automatic account lockout as standard.
Access permission controls
Accountants should be able to control access and file sharing permissions for their clients and team members. Having ultimate control over who is able to view, edit and share certain documentation will ensure that it won’t end up in the wrong hands and at risk of being compromised.
Passwords and expiry dates/times for sharing files externally
Whilst it’s beneficial to be able to share your files with external users of your software, accountants should be taking the relevant steps to protect the information as it goes out. Setting a password with an expiry date and time is the ideal solution, meaning that hackers won’t be able to get in through the recipients’ email account.
Audit trails for activity monitoring
Accountants should be able to monitor user activity of your users an audit trail included in your cloud software. Audit trails enable you to closely monitor everything; from log-ins and log-outs, to uploads and downloads, to shared and deleted files. This supports compliance requirements, risk management and positive reinforcement.
These features best practices will ensure a more efficient and secure experience when sharing financial and client information. If your existing solution doesn’t offer these features, it’s worth looking around to find a solution that will.
If you’re an accountant and would like to find out more about secure file sharing with Clinked, take a look at our features and sign up for a free 10-day trial today.