How to Safeguard Your HUD Software — And Protect Clients from Identity Theft

You store sensitive information about your clients, ranging from Social Security numbers to credit information. This data is vulnerable physically, via files and office equipment, and also digitally as at least some, if not all, elements of real estate transactions occur across the internet with emails, document sharing, and other electronic means. You need that information to complete the HUD closing statement but you also need to protect it from unauthorized viewing, capture, and possession of any devices that provide access to this data. Here are a few tips on how to make HUD software for real estate closings even more secure against street and cybercriminals.

Password Protect Your Computer – The computer running your real estate closing software should require a login and a password, and should automatically lock and require the password be re-entered if left unattended or inactive after a short period of time. This is important for desktops but even more so for laptops, which can be more easily stolen. It takes only a couple of seconds to enter a password and yet this goes a long way to stopping most attempts to get into your computer.

Use A Good Password – Computer security firm SplashData recently released their list of the most common passwords, which included such obvious choices as “123456”, “qwerty” and of course “password” and its clever brother “password1”. Using passwords like these is like leaving your front door unlocked with a sign saying, “Please don’t rob me. Thank you.” You don’t have to use passwords like “k1c#i/a4” but use a little common sense when choosing one.

Update Your Security Software – You should have at the very least a firewall and an antivirus program. Your computer almost certainly came with both. However out-of-date security software rapidly becomes useless. Set all software for automatic updates, including not just your security software but also Windows, your browser, Java and any other potential security holes.

Don’t Forget Physical Security – True hacking is rarer than shown in the movies. Most data theft is burglary rather than digital crime. A thief can break into your office, take your computers and if they are able to gain access into your computers operating system, they may be able to access your HUD settlement statement software and files all too easily. It’s not enough to lock the main door. Each office door should be locked as well. If you are in a high crime area you might want to invest in an alarm or security patrol. Remember a thief doesn’t just steal your equipment; he steals customer identities.

Some people feel that, since serious hackers can get past any security, there is no reason to implement these protections. Security isn’t so much about keeping people out as it is making you a more difficult target than someone else. Easysoft legal software implements the best security features around, but you still need to practice smart computing as well.

At Easysoft, we know how important your responsibility to keep your clients’ information secure is and our software’s security protocols reflect that. Easysoft Real Estate Software also has a two-factor authentication option you can enable to help you rest assured that only you are accessing your files with sensitive client information. See for yourself how easy-to-use and affordable Easysoft Legal Software’s real estate solution is when you schedule a demo and qualify for a free 7-day trial.

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