How Secure is Your Dealership Security?
Cyber security is becoming an increasingly crucial part of any small business operations. Every year, millions of consumer data points get leaked, either through hacking or by accidental or purposeful employee actions. And, importantly, 60 percent of small businesses who suffer from a cyber attack go out of business within 6 months.
It’s easy to understand why. As a car dealership, you are responsible for all data that your consumers share with you. Considering you perform sometimes complex and major transactions, that responsibility can be immense. If something goes wrong, your dealership will be held liable for damages. and even if it can survive that financial danger, you will lose significant trust among current and potential customers, who would rather work with someone they can trust with their data in the future.
That, in turn, makes emphasizing cyber security as a business priority absolutely vital to survive long-term. The earlier you start in this emphasis, the better – fortunately, you can accomplish it with just a few simple steps.
Understand the Importance of Cyber Security
First, it’s important to understand the importance of cyber security as a business priority across all levels. While it’s easy to think of the concept as related only to hacking attacks, that does not have to be the case.
In reality, cyber security can describe anything that potentially compromises your data. For instance, a situation as simple as an employee forgetting to log off their computer during lunch can compromise customer data if someone else has access to that computer.
Of course, that’s not where cyber security ends. Safety on all level starts with a firewall for your internet access, along with an understanding of best data handling (and even destruction) best practices. That, in turn, requires the next step in making sure your car dealership is secure.
Engage in Effective Employee Training
How regularly do you train your employees on how to conduct their business? From sales personnel to your front desk and financing department, how integrated is your training to ensure that everyone working for the dealership is on the same page and has the same basic understanding of their responsibilities?
Answering that question is vital to a first step toward cyber security. Ideally, your businesses should already have a training mindset, in which you can insert lessons about keeping customer and financial data secure into an existing framework.
If that is not the case, think about setting up some more comprehensive training. This type of training will ensure that your employees understand the nuances of handling sensitive information, and keeping it safe at all times. Training can be as general as instilling this mindset, or as specific as setting up guidelines on how to act each time an employee comes across sensitive data.
Find the Right Financing Solution
Finally, no emphasis on cyber security can be complete without an understanding that the software you use to store and process the sensitive information is actually secure. While the above steps can protect you from accidental breaches, they do little for targeted attack. In that case, your software has to hold up.
That’s where we enter the equation. eLEND solutions seeks to provide car dealerships like you with secure financing solutions that don’t just make your processes more efficient, but also help to keep your customer data safe and protected. We’re the first non-credit repository/credit reseller to receive EI3PA certification, the highest level of security certification in the automotive industry.
In other words, we can be a perfect partner for car dealerships looking to emphasize security as a business priority. To learn more about our solution, and how it can improve your car dealership, contact us.
Author: Pete Maclnnis
Author Bio: Pete brings over 37 years of experience in automotive finance and technology as Founder and CEO of eLEND Solutions™. Founded in 2003 as DealerCentric, eLEND Solutions™ is an automotive FinTech company specializing in online and in-store digital credit, identity and finance solutions designed to create a more efficient and profitable vehicle purchase process for the retail automotive industry.