Universal Accounting Center (UAC), an accounting school for small business accounting, bookkeeping and tax professionals is joining forces with Veronica Wasek to help bookkeepers grow their businesses by offering them a proven work flow (standard operating procedures) and business system to organize and operate their firm efficiently and profitably.
“It just made perfect sense for us to team up with Veronica,” said UAC President & CEO, Roger Knecht. “For years we’ve emphasized the 3 keys areas to have the premier accounting firm and she nails it when it comes to the production side of the business.”
“Universal offers accounting professionals the resources, training, certifications, coaching and support needed in today,” said Veronica Wasek. “I’m excited to work with them to help accounting professionals build successful businesses. Partnering with them is such an exciting opportunity.”
In the past few years Roger and Veronica have had various conversations about the accounting profession. Running into each other at various accounting conferences this is now the opportunity to work together.
For more information about this opportunity and how it applies to you GO HERE!
As technology becomes more enmeshed in our daily lives, cyberattacks are on the rise. Hackers stole hundreds of millions of Equifax login credentials after the credit reporting agency didn’t update its software. Meanwhile, Anthem recently paid a record $115 million settlement to current and former customers after hackers stole their names, Social Security numbers, and contact information. If you run a small business, it’s your ethical and legal responsibility to prevent data breaches like these. Keep reading for some best practices to protect your customers’ data and your profit margin.
What’s a Cyberattack?
To prevent a security breach, you must understand what they are and why they’re so destructive. Consumers and companies increasingly find themselves potential targets for cyberattacks, a type of online security breach. Cisco defines cyberattacks as “malicious” and “deliberate” efforts to “breach the information system of another individual or organization.” Criminals benefit from these attacks by seeking money, disrupting business, or destroying data.
Data Protection is Good for Business
Investing time and money into data protection is good for your business because:
You’ll stay legal.
In some situations, you may be legally obligated to secure your customers’ data. In New York, for example, certain businesses must follow the NYDFS Cybersecurity Regulation, requiring local companies to implement infrastructure protecting from cybersecurity threats.
According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, at least 15 states have similar data security laws. Find your state’s regulations here. If you do business abroad, you’ll also need to familiarize yourself with those countries’ laws. For instance, Europe’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), the world’s strongest data protection law, dictates how businesses can handle European customer information.
You’ll stay ethical.
According to Inc.com, it’s up to businesses to “take the lead” when it comes to data protection. That includes having web developers encrypt sensitive data like credit card numbers, passwords, and Social Security numbers. Because hackers specifically target businesses that don’t have proper security measures in place, make sure your network is secure and updated, and promptly fix any security holes.
You’ll stay profitable.
These days, customers value transparent, trustworthy businesses — yet only 1 in 3 consumers trust businesses to do what’s right. By being upfront about the ways you’ll protect your customers’ valuable data, you’ll establish a sense of trust and reliability. However, Financial Post notes, “your words will hold no weight if your customer data falls into the wrong hands.” In addition to securing your network, train your employees on what to do in the event of a data breach. Practice makes perfect, and clearly-communicated policies and procedures will help your company swiftly recover in the event of a data breach.
Protecting Your Customers and Your Business
Although there’s no foolproof way to prevent cyber threats, these precautions will help:
Multi-factor authentication. Rather than relying on usernames and passwords alone, add additional levels of security. Examples include combining passwords with fingerprint scans, retina scans, employee ID cards, or smartphone access.
Implement data loss protection. Adding data loss prevention (DLP) software ensures sensitive data isn’t exposed to internal or external threats by unauthorized users, and DLP ensures your meeting compliance requirements
Data encryption. By hiding sensitive data, such as passwords or credit card numbers, behind a complex passcode, you’ll help control who can access that information, even if someone steals it.
Policies and procedures. Train your employees on how to document, report, and fix cybersecurity threats. Depending upon your industry and location, you may also be legally required to report such events to local authorities.
Stay up-to-date. Make sure your network and website are running on the latest software versions. Hire developers and engineers to help plug any security holes before they become a problem.
Data protection isn’t just the right thing to do. It’s good for your customers, and for your bottom line. By having the right frameworks in place, you’ll prevent threats and recover from worst-case scenarios. By spending a little extra time and money, you’ll increase your profits, show people they can trust you, and have peace of mind knowing your data is protected.
By Julie Morris
Julie Morris is a life and career coach. She thrives on helping others live their best lives. It’s easy for her to relate to clients who feel run over by life because she’s been there. After years in a successful (but unfulfilling) career in finance, Julie busted out of the corner office that had become her prison. Today, she is fulfilled by helping busy professionals like her past self get the clarity they need in order to live inspired lives that fill more than just their bank accounts. When Julie isn’t working with clients, she enjoys writing and is currently working on her first book. She also loves spending time outdoors and getting lost in a good book.
Bill came to the world of ledgers and tax returns by an unlikely route. He majored in music, and spent time as a songwriter in Los Angeles, even landing a spot on a production team for a Stevie Wonder spin-off called Writer’s Quarters West. To help make ends meet for his young family, Bill started a small business in 1988, part time, while still keeping a foot in the music industry. But it quickly consumed all his time and energy, and he discovered that he actually enjoyed running a business, which required learning how to keep the books, which led to an MBA in finance and accounting. Eventually, Bill was hired by Universal Accounting Center in Salt Lake City to teach their unique bookkeeping and tax preparation courses to students from all over the country. He has been a lead writer and editor for Universal Accounting’s Professional Tax Preparer course. He also worked several seasons as a tax professional for H&R Block. Having worked several seasons as a tax professional for H&R Block, Bill currently runs his own thriving bookkeeping, accounting and tax preparation business.
Starting and building a successful tax business takes time and effort.
Listen as Bill Brough EA, shares his experience and some advice.
As a professional tax preparer Bill first started with just a handful of clients one tax season. In time it went from being a supplemental income that he was doing on week nights and week ends to a cross road. Yes, he took the leap and started doing taxes full-time doubling and even tripling his business each tax season year-over-year.
Bill Brough EA, owner and founder of Bottom Line Bookkeeping & Tax. Primary contributor and content writer to the Professional Tax Preparer PTP program.
Todd Manion had a typical start to the accounting profession. After transitioning from economics to accounting as a major he received his masters degree in accounting and found employment doing audits. Really no surprises to start with but wait.
Next comes the opportunity to become the Chief Financial Officer (CFO) for a company and that is when the “fun” started. After the shock of the first day the adventure began.
Listen as Todd shares his journey, starting his first business offering onsite CFO services to selling it and now working with accounting firms develop their talent on the path to becoming partners.
Hear what advice he has for those starting their own firm as well as his suggestions for those running a successful accounting firm now.
Listen as Roger and Todd also discuss the future of accounting and what is on the horizon for the profession. What every accounting professional needs to know to prepare for their future and remain relevant for their clients.
For Christeen accounting was just that natural next step in her career to helping business owners. Accounting is that obvious choice of services that every business needs but there is more than just preparing the financials.
Christeen Era is the owner and founder of Core Accounting Services. Hear her story and see what advice she has to help you build your firm with confidence.
Listen as she shares what she has done to remain relevant for her clients as a Profit First Professional offering more value added services.
It’s time to ignite your passions again and work ON your business. See what you can do to take your business to the next level and get paid what you are worth.