Fraud prevention tips for business owners

The challenges of running a successful business in today’s evolving digital world can be daunting — from ensuring you’re providing high-quality, personal service to protecting your financial information and overall cybersecurity considerations.

With the relentless uptick in fraud, it’s essential to know steps you can take to protect your business’ personal data and that of your clients.

In addition to regularly reviewing your business’ internal security protocols, consider the following tips to further strengthen your everyday practices and keep your information out of the wrong hands.

Educate yourself and your team

The first step in combating fraud is to become well-informed. As a business owner, take the time to educate yourself and your team about the common types and warning signs of fraud. Make fraud awareness a regular part of your training program and ensure that your employees know how to identify and report suspicious activities. An informed and prepared team is a valuable asset in combating fraud.

Create a fraud policy

Establish a clear and comprehensive policy for your business that outlines steps to take when fraud is suspected or detected. Communicate this policy to your employees, so they know what to do in the event of a potential incident.

Secure your financial information

Protecting your business' financial information is paramount. Safeguard your bank account details, credit card information and other sensitive data. Some best practices include using strong, unique passwords for your online accounts, enabling multifactor authentication wherever possible, regularly reviewing your bank and credit card statements for unauthorized transactions and storing sensitive information in a secure, password-protected location.

Monitor your accounts regularly

Stay vigilant by frequently monitoring your bank accounts and financial statements. Keep an eye out for unusual or suspicious activity and report any discrepancies to your financial institution immediately.

Use secure payment methods

When it comes to receiving payments, ensure that you are using secure and reputable payment methods. Credit card payments and bank transfers generally are safer than less-regulated options. If you accept checks, verify their authenticity before depositing them.

Busey’s Check Positive Pay solutions provide multiple options for business owners to choose from to meet their select needs. From Traditional Positive Pay and Payee Match to Reverse Positive Pay and Check Block, you can add an extra layer of security to your accounts. Our ACH Positive Pay solutions allow you to “authorize” transactions to post and blocks any unauthorized items — and can be done automatically to save you time.

Be wary of phishing scams

Phishing is a prevalent form of cyberfraud. Educate your team about the dangers of phishing emails, text messages and other deceptive communications. Encourage employees to double-check the sender’s email address and avoid clicking on suspicious links or downloading unknown attachments.

Report incidents promptly

If you suspect or detect fraud, report it to your bank as well as any relevant authorities. Timely reporting can help minimize the damage and prevent future incidents.

Stay informed

Fraudsters constantly are evolving their tactics, so staying informed is critical. Keep up with the latest fraud trends and emerging threats. Additional information on fraud prevention can be found on Busey’s Money Matters blog at

Add fraud mitigation tools

Busey offers business owners the assistance and answers they need to keep their business successful and nimble. With solutions designed specifically for your business, our Treasury Management team will analyze your cash flow needs and recommend ways to make the most of your money through automated solutions. You'll feel secure knowing that Busey’s behind you. To learn more about our Check Positive Pay and ACH Positive Pay, visit

• Andy Santangelo is executive vice president and director of treasury management for Busey Bank, a Member FDIC.

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