When it comes to electronic data, one of the biggest questions asked is usually around security and how safe data is when utilising an automated processes.
We believe that strong internal controls are the backbone of any effective accounts payable operation and, as a result of that, our automated invoice processing solution deploys all the available technologies and safeguards so we can provide our customers with the confidence of knowing their data is protected.
Businesses may fail to realise that there data is even less secure in a paper based system. Therefore, one of the best decisions you can make, as a business owner, is to consider switching to an automated invoice processing solution as an automated system reduces the likelihood of human interference negatively impacting your data.
There are some shocking statistics surrounding manual invoice processing.
Switching from a manual to an automated process removes one of the most important risks to invoice processing – human error or deliberate fraud.
According to a survey by Tungsten Network reported in 2016 by Experian, UK SMEs are losing more than £9b from invoice fraud every year. Almost half of companies surveyed had received a fraudulent or suspicious invoice in the previous year with tactics including: unknown invoices attached to an email or sent by post; false changes to bank details; and sending duplicate invoices.
Use our basic security guidelines
To help prevent your accounts department falling victim to fraud follow these basic guidelines:
- Make sure you raise awareness throughout your business and specifically with staff working within the accounts department of the types of invoice scams and how to recognise it before it happens.
- Only deal with suppliers and customers when you are sure of their identity. Double check if you have any doubts.
- Configure your electronic invoicing software so that only known suppliers can upload their invoices and add in checks to ensure these are validated before they are paid.
- Make sure your IT department has encrypted all sensitive information and that you have extensive firewalls in place for electronic information. For any paper documentation, use a shredder and dispose of accordingly.
Rules can also be established within the automated software to carry out further checks on invoices. These include the supplier being on your approved list, that the data within the invoice matches with both the purchase ledger and with the delivery note (known as 3-way matching) and that the invoice amount matches the order details.
Using access controls further protects your data
As a matter of basic security, User Login/Password restricted systems should deny unauthorised users access. But this can be taken further. At Dajon we suggest businesses set up additional access controls to further protect our clients data, even down to who has access to a specific field on an invoice.
We believe that the real strength of adopting a technical solution is that it shifts some of the responsibility for checking an invoice from your finance team to a highly sophisticated, automated-service provider that is expert in building business-specific rules which invoices are validated against.
http://www.adobe.com/content/dam/Adobe/en/devnet/livecycle/pdfs/lc_eInvoicing_wp_ie.pdf https://www.dajon.co.uk/blog/how-small-businesses-get-paid-faster-with-invoice-automation https://www.dajon.co.uk/blog/how-a-paperless-transformation-can-prevent-invoice-fraud-in-your-accounts-payable-department https://www.billtrust.com/blog/ways-to-protect-invoicing-process-from-data-breaches https://pyrus.com/en/blog/manual-invoice-processing http://www.experian.co.uk/blogs/latest-thinking/smes-losing-9bn-invoice-fraud https://www.tungsten-network.com/blog/archive/the-staggering-scale-of-invoice-fraud http://www.maxxvault.com/MaxxPress/five-benefits-automated-invoice-processing http://www.lexmark.com/en_gb/solutions/financial-process-automation/solutions/document-process-automation/invoice-processing-for-microsoft-dynamics.html http://blog.docuphase.com/accounting-automation/get-robotic-accounting-automation http://www.financialops.org/web/guidance/process-controls