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WHAT CAN I DO TO PROTECT MY COMPANY FROM IDENTITY THEFT?

Great question! This issue recently came up when a motor carrier was contacted by a third-party administrator (TPA) who was requesting unlimited access to the motor carrier’s intranet so it could file, process, and handle claims. Specifically, the TPA requested the motor carrier’s website login and password information to obtain information and documentation for a claim. This raised a red flag with the motor carrier, rightfully so. Before granting access to sensitive company data or agreeing to do business with anyone, you need to take steps to protect your identity from cyber criminals and other thieves to ensure the brokers, carriers, shippers, and receivers you do business with are legitimate.

There are many ways criminals can steal a person’s or company’s identity. Below are common theft methods and ideas to help defend your company from identity theft.

SKIMMERS

A skimmer is a device placed on a card reader commonly found at gas stations and grocery stores that stores a person’s credit/debit card information. A fraudster then uses the stolen card information to make counterfeit cards.

Defense: Train drivers to watch for these devices at truck stops.

DUMPSTER DIVERS

Identity thieves have no shame and will resort to rummaging through your trash to steal sensitive personal and company data.

Defense: Use a mobile shredding service for on-site destruction of documents, hard drives, etc.

PHISHERS

Phishing is when a thief poses as a legitimate person and sends emails that have malicious links or attachments included. Once opened, the virus can infect computer systems, stealing login credentials or account information.

Defense: Train employees not to open suspicious emails. Never email or share passwords, logins, or other sensitive information with third parties.

POOR COMMUNICATION

“Loose lips sink ships” is a communication security slogan dating back to World War II that is still used today. When employees share sensitive company information with strangers, such as a driver discussing a load of high-value cargo at a truck stop or an office employee walking away from his or her computer without logging out, the company is exposed to theft.

Defense: Train employees on communication security techniques.

IMPERSONATORS

Impersonators pretend to represent a legitimate broker or carrier to secure a load, and then they create a false bill of lading, pick up the load, and are never heard from again. A scammer may also pose as a legitimate broker, re-broker a load, then run off with the funds, leaving the second broker and motor carrier empty-handed.

Defense: Verify the identity of business contacts using public information—especially their phone numbers.

CALL TO ACTION

  • Verify the identity of the driver, truck, and broker before releasing a load.

  • Use trusted brokers and carriers for shipments.

  • Create a recovery plan in the event your identity is stolen.

  • Train employees on identity theft techniques and protection methods.

Note: These lists are not intended to be all-inclusive.

This material is intended to be a broad overview of the subject matter and is provided for informational purposes only. Great West Casualty Company does not provide legal advice to its insureds or other  parties, nor does it advise insureds or other parties on employment-related issues, therefore the subject matter is not intended to serve as legal or employment advice for any issue(s) that may arise in the operations of its insureds or other parties. Legal advice should always be sought from legal counsel. Great West Casualty Company shall have neither liability nor responsibility to any person or entity with respect to any loss, action, or inaction alleged to be caused directly or indirectly as a result of the information contained herein.Reprinted with permission from Great West Casualty Company.

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