Document security for the trustworthy accountant
It will come as no surprise to you (though you may be a tad flattered) that accountants are recognised as among the most trustworthy of Australian professionals. In fact the recent Roy Morgan Image of Professions Survey 2015 finds accountants ranked a respectable number 11 (a bit after police and high court judges, and a bit ahead of bank managers and heads of religion).
To ensure you keep this position, it’s important to consider the security of your communication processes. In particular, client data and the sharing of sensitive tax documents. A recent Lifehacker post reviewed the ideal methods of doing just that, with a physical handover being recognised as the safest solution.
While that makes sense, it’s simply not practical – certainly not in traffic-logged Melbourne anyway. Lifehacker goes on to describe the three typical digital data sharing options:
- An encrypted file-sharing service
It goes without saying that sending sensitive documents by email is a no-no. It just isn’t safe. While the chances of email interception by shady types isn’t high, it can and does happen. Same with mailbox hacks. So let’s just agree that we don’t make it a policy to email sensitive data, ok?
Password-encrypting sensitive documents is smart. It’s also clunky, especially when you’re dealing with passwords for different clients. Even different documents with the same client. It’s also rather clunky to set-up. You encrypt the document, set a password, send the password to your client, send the file … it’s all a bit, well, clunky.
As it happens, the best document data transfer solutions nowadays use both encryption and messaging. Secure portals such as MYOB Portal ensure data is shared securely, quickly, and with a minimum of fuss.
Certainly in the case of MYOB Portal, each of your clients can have a single portal for them only. Or, if they’re in a partnership, another portal for them and their partner.
Most importantly, though, for the sake of the accounting profession’s trustworthy reputation in the community, it’s secure.