Protect Your Business Credit Cards

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Protect your Business Credit Cards

We talk a lot about security issues here. That isn’t restricted to email, network, and devices! Security includes keeping your business safe in multiple ways. One of the most important ways to keep your business secure is by securing your credit cards by creating a Credit Card Policy.

Business Credit Cards

There are a lot of differences between having a credit card for your business and a personal credit card. Business cards come with a lot of benefits and a lot of responsibility. Most business credit cards will have a lot higher credit limit than personal cards and most cards are not covered by Consumer Protection laws that personal cards are covered by.

With this being the case, the responsibility of the cardholder is much greater than with a personal card. Put in the wrong hands and without proper direction could be disastrous for your business.

Who holds a credit card?

This question is entirely at the discretion of the business owners and managers. You don’t want to hand out cards to everyone. Keeping this reeled in is important to keep your purchases from getting out of hand. You want to choose a small number of people in your business to be cardholders and you want to make sure that these people are trustworthy, dependable, and mature. The fewer cards out there, the less likely of a security issue.

Purchase Power

Keep the purchasing power of each individual to a minimum. Work with your credit card company or bank to ensure that each card-holder has a limit that works with their purchase needs, but is kept as low as possible. This ensures that in case of a breach, the damage will be minimized.

Create a Credit Card Policy

This is very important!! A policy must be put in place and signed by each credit cardholder. This document will outline the rules and regulations that each cardholder must follow when given the responsibility of making purchases on behalf of the business.

Things to include in your policy

Not all of these will pertain to your business, but each item should be considered before creating your policy. You may also want to contact your credit card company, bank, or lawyer for recommendations.

  • Rules and Regulations: Clearly list the rules to your credit cardholders. You may want to include purchasing limits, procedural items for submitting receipts, and reporting requirements.
  • Responsibility and Liability: Clearly list your employee’s responsibilities in holding their card. You want to clear your business of any liability when cards are issued.
  • Type of Card: There are various types of cards with different payment methods, make sure this is well-defined in your policy.
  • Penalty for Abuse: Define to your cardholder the repercussions of abusing their business card. Make sure they understand that they are held responsible and will be reprimanded accordingly should they abuse the privilege.
  • Security Procedure: Clearly define how your cardholder will be required to handle their card. Remind them not to hand the card to anyone else or let anyone else purchase or sign for them. Mention that they need to be mindful of where the card is at all times.
  • Lost or Stolen Policy: What is your policy for a lost or stolen card. Make sure the employee understands this procedure in case of a security incident.

Expense Reports

Should you have employees who do need to make occasional small purchases but don’t feel they need to be a cardholder, consider setting up an Expense Report policy. Expense reports are the best alternative to handing out credit cards to your employees. If your people only make a few purchases or transactions per month, an expense report is a much safer way to control your purchasing.

You may want to include Expense report guidelines in your policy, depending on how specific you want it to be.

Being a card-holder for your business is a great responsibility and ensuring that your company cannot be held liable for someone’s careless or malicious actions is crucial. Consider putting together a policy today to protect your business. Should you need guidance or consultation, Harbor is always here to help! Don’t hesitate to give us a call. We’ll be more than happy to give our expert guidance.

About Harbor Computer Services

Harbor Computer Services is an IT firm servicing Southeastern Michigan. We work exclusively under contract with our clients to provide technology direction and either become the IT department or provide assistance to the internal IT they already have. We have won many awards for our work over the years, including the worldwide Microsoft Partner of the Year in 2010. Most recently we were recognized as one of the top MSP’s in the nation by ChannelFutures coming in at #40 nationwide. And in 2016 as the top Michigan IT firm for Manufacturing. There are a few simple things that make Harbor Computer Services the best choice for your business. •We are Professionals •We are Responsible •We care about your business

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