closeup of a computer laptop with a tax form on screen, concept of online tax filing (3d render)

3 Ways to Protect Your Data During Tax Season


We’ve checked our New Year’s Resolution list.

Have you?

If cyber security isn’t on your resolution list for 2020, you’ll want to go back and reconsider this important coverage.

It’s that time of year where a cyber policy is needed even more.

Small businesses and even you are a huge target for hackers and scams, especially during tax season.

You may not think you need cyber security, but that’s simply not true. These tips still hold true for this upcoming tax season.

Courtesy of our partners at Auto Owners Insurance, here are tasks you should do to prevent your data from being hacked:

Don’t Ignore Updates

“A software update is available now. Update now or try again later?”

We’ve all seen a similar prompt pop up across our computer screens. Oftentimes we’re in the middle of something and opt to try the update again later.

Even though it’s a little bit of an inconvenience to update your computer, or software, it’s important to go ahead and do so.

Many apps and software companies issue updates to fix bugs and other problems. Some updates might even be for security purposes.

Don’t ignore updates because your personal information might be vulnerable to a hack that could’ve been avoided had you updated your systems.

What’s the Password?

Please don’t say “password.”

It’s supposed to be one that is hard to guess.

It’s recommended that you use the best password practices to prevent a hacker from easily accessing private information, but we’re sure you already knew that.

Don’t use passwords that include personal pieces of information that might be identifiable to a hacker. This includes numbers and letters that resemble birthdates, anniversaries and names etc.

You should also avoid using patterns and series of numbers and/or letters.

Mix it up.

Try a capital letter here and a number there. Add a symbol in between.

If you can’t remember the password yourself because it’s not easily remembered, you’re on the right track.

That’s Phishy

Can you easily identify a phishing scam?

If not, it’s time for you to learn how to recognize them.

Double check your emails before you respond because the sender might not be who you think it is.

Make sure you aren’t clicking suspicious links and opening web pages that “look” like the site you should be on.

What to Do

Think about how much of your personal information is available at once when filing your taxes: social security number, address, health information, work addresses, and your total income for the previous year.

The Internet has made it easier for us to file taxes online, which is convenient. However, you need to protect yourself from the methods hackers use to access your data online.

Along with the tips previously mentioned, don’t forget to protect your home and office computers with antivirus software, so you have help identifying fishy sites and protection against malware and viruses.

If you don’t own a business, it’s still a good rule of thumb to be cyber safe and to follow best data protection practices to keep your personal information from being easily accessible to hackers.

As a business owner, if you were to ever have a data breach, it WILL MOST LIKELY NOT be covered under your general liability insurance policy. You will be responsible for all losses and costs that arise from the data breach.

We are here to help you prevent having the burden of going through a data breach without coverage.

If you’re ready to discuss cyber security, please contact us and we will be happy to assist you.


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Allied Insurance Managers's Bio

Headquartered in Rochester Hills, Mich., Allied Insurance Managers is one of the largest, privately-owned, independent insurance agencies in Michigan.