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Don’t gamble your business’ success by waiting for your computer or tech gadget to get damaged or stolen before realizing that you should have safeguarded your business information. Just a few extra steps can help protect your valuable business data in case disaster ever strikes.
Data loss or security breaches can not only be a nightmare in possibly bringing your job to a gridlock but you also may be at risk of having your information used for fraud or identity theft and may even face a lawsuit if the compromised data involved your clients’ personal information.
About 28 percent of real estate agents and 29 percent of brokers have reported being inconvenienced by a virus or spyware attack, according to a 2009 survey by the Center for Realtor Technology. What’s more, a recent survey of small business professionals, including those working in real estate, found that 71 percent do not back up off-site information, software or hardware, according to the SB Authority Market Sentiment Survey.
So if you think your business information isn’t at risk, think again. As real estate professionals become more mobile and jump to cloud computing, your risk has grown even more. Virus and malware threats to smartphones and tablets is skyrocketing. For example, McAfee, a computer security provider, reported earlier this year that mobile malware threats increased by 46 percent from 2009 to 2010 alone.
“As more users access the Internet from an ever-expanding pool of devices–computer, tablet, smartphone or Internet TV–Web-based threats will continue to grow in size and sophistication,” McAfee noted in its report.
Exchanging online information with agents and brokers, title and mortgage officials, and other companies also can put you at risk if proper safety precautions aren’t taken. Plus, it’s not only smart business sense but if you collect any bank statements and forms with your clients’ Social Security numbers, driver’s license numbers, or other financial information, you have a responsibility to protect your clients’ sensitive information.
What can you do to safeguard your valuable business information? Download our white paper on How to Protect Your Online Data.