In 2022, we live in a digital age, where every day, most of us carry around more data that could ever have been imagined in a phone no bigger than your hand. But, as the saying goes, with great power comes great responsibility, and whilst having such easy access to our own data is, in so many ways, a wonderful thing, it’s also a criminal’s dream. This is why it is so important to ensure that your data is as protected as possible, whomever it is held by, something that the GDPR (General Data Protection Regulations) introduced in 2018 aimed to do.
And so, we are very happy to announce that PaperRocket Accounting has been awarded the Cyber Essentials certification, meaning that you can trust in us to keep your personal data safe and secure.
GDPR- What it is?
The GDPR is the toughest privacy and security law in the world. If you cast your minds back to 2018 (PP- pre pandemic if you will!), you may remember having an inbox flooded with emails from pretty much any company you’ve ever had any dealings with regarding new privacy policies, and opt in marketing requests. This is because, as part of the GDPR, any organisations who hold data on individuals are required to have certain measures in place to protect this data, be it from misuse or potential hackers. And if the UK body in charge of these regulations, the ICO (Information Commissioner’s Office) find that a company has violated these rules, severe penalties can be levied (up to €20 million, or 4% annual global turnover).
GDPR- Why it’s important?
As we started off in this blog by saying, we live in an age where so much of our data is online. And whilst this is incredibly handy, it can also be risky if it isn’t protected adequately. If your data is leaked or hacked, you could be at risk of identity theft, or even financial theft if certain information including passwords becomes accessible. Therefore, it is so important that you take steps to ensure that you are protecting your data.
However, what about when you entrust your data with others? How can you be sure that they are taking the appropriate steps to protect you?
What your accountant should be doing to protect your information?
If you have an accountant, then chances are, they hold a lot of personal information on you, be that address, date of birth, national insurance number, bank account details etc. Therefore, your accountants are certainly one of the ‘data processors’ that you want to ensure are protecting your data well. Some of the ways they should do this are:
- Maintaining firewalls on their computers.
- Ensuring anything with access to personal data is password protected with a ‘strong’ password, not to be held anywhere other than a secure password manager, and not to be repeated for any other application.
- Ensure only current employees have access to any client information or login details.
- Any security updates to be automatically installed on company hardware.
- All staff to have regular training on GDPR and the specific company data protection policies.
These are just a few of the ways that your data should be protected, there are many more.
What is Cyber Essentials?
Cyber Essentials provides a framework for businesses to protect themselves against a whole range of the most common cyber attacks. Annual reviews are carried out to check a company’s compliance and maintain certification. There are a variety of steps (including the ones above) that organisations must undertake to gain this accreditation. It is backed by the UK government and overseen by the National Cyber Security Centre.
Can you really afford to risk your data getting into the wrong hands?
Perhaps you have recently found yourself concerned about your current accountant’s cyber security, or maybe this blog has put some doubts in your mind. If either of these are the case, switching accountants is generally a straightforward process, with old and new accountants taking care of the bulk of the transfer for you. And now that PaperRocket is Cyber Essentials certified, this, as well as so many other reasons, is why we are safe hands for you and your business.
PaperRocket Accounting provide accounting and tax services to professional contractors, freelancers, and small businesses working in the UK.
We offer our clients a flexible choice of fixed fee monthly packages which cover all of their accounting and tax needs (so no hidden costs or surprise bills!). All of our accounting packages include a monthly subscription for a cloud accounting software subscription provided by the awarding winning FreeAgent.
Each of our clients is given their own dedicated qualified accountant with unlimited access in person, telephone, or by email.
We pride ourselves on our client satisfaction and customer service and were awarded ‘Best Contractor Accountancy’ firm 2020 in The Contracting Awards and ‘Welwyn Hatfield Business of the Year 2019’ in the SME Hertfordshire awards.
To find out how we can help you please get in touch now.