Archive for the ‘Communications’ Category

Why encrypted email is essential

Monday, September 18th, 2017

Email just isn’t safe and, when your business depends on it, you need to consider other ways of communicating.

Emails can end up in the wrong hands – by human error or more sinister means. We’ve all sent emails by mistake (‘Sorry, that wasn’t meant for you’) and we also know of companies who have had their systems hacked. Both of these scenarios are commonplace. They also smack of incompetence and unprofessionalism – both bad news for any professional firm.

So what’s the alternative? We believe it’s all about building layers of security, making it harder to access or make mistakes. docSAFE allows you to send an encrypted message to a secure portal. The recipient is notified and then visits the portal to collect it. The email, its contents and any attachments STAY IN THE SECURE PORTAL. You can also see who reads it (or not).

It’s really inexpensive, simple and it works – please ask us for more details or a free trial.

Why all kinds of organisations should be using docSAFE

Tuesday, August 29th, 2017

We traditionally provide docSAFE to the professions who demand top security and client confidentiality (among other things). However we are seeing docSAFE rise in popularity with other sectors, almost by accident but with very good reason.

You may have seen a mailer we sent out recently that illustrated how the NHS had suffered a huge breach of data of its junior doctors in the north-east. We researched this and found that the NHS staff use of WhatsApp is also widespread which is really worrying.

Organisations that hold any personal data, especially publicly accountable organisations, should be using systems to communicate that are extremely secure. docSAFE has been designed to be secure on a number of key levels – secure login (using 2-factor authentication), secure portal in which to exchange messages and documents, online signing, to be GDPR compliant, offer automatic backups to secure EU based servers and much more.

By using a portal instead of email, for example, the message sit in the cloud until the recipient accesses it. By return, the responses sit in the cloud until the sender accesses it. Both are notified and know the information is there – but it’s locked away safely, staying put, not flying through the ether.

We are expecting more uptake of docSAFE by schools, colleges, universities, doctors and hospitals and similar organisations where security simply cannot be the weak link. Talk to us if you think we can help with your secure communications.

Making Tax Digital – let us explain

Monday, August 28th, 2017

Making Tax Digital (MTD) presents a significant change for British tax payers and is a massive undertaking for HMRC who has ambitious plans for its tax administration.

Quite simply, if you are a business that is VAT registered, under the new MTD scheme, your annual return will become a thing of the past. The new system is intended to help everyone keep on top of their tax affairs more effectively by bringing together all of an individual’s or organisation’s tax affairs and monitoring all the information on a monthly basis.

HMRC’s ambition is to become one of the most digitally advanced tax administrations in the world, modernising the tax system to make it more effective, more efficient and easier for customers to comply.” (HMRC)

It would seem that one of HMRC’s key motivators is the many billions of pounds it loses through incorrect returns. “In 2014 to 2015 over £3.5 billion of revenue was lost due to these mistakes in VAT returns alone” (source: gov.uk).

The key points to note:

  • Every business and individual will have their own digital tax account, enabling them to see payments in and out, as well as their ‘balance’ – just like online banking
  • It comes into effect April 2019
  • Businesses under the VAT threshold (currently £85,000) can choose to opt in or out of the new system, as preferred
  • It is expected that all businesses will have to use MTD by April 2020
  • Information that can HMRC can obtain from employers, banks and government departments won’t be required to be provided
  • The new system should create ‘tax in real time’ showing what is owing as close to real time as possible
  • Better communications are proposed, allowing secure messaging

“ICAEW welcomed the announcements. The institute’s position on MTD has been supportive of the move to digital in principle, but that MTD should not be mandatory or impose unreasonable admin burdens, and its introduction should allow enough time to ensure the system works. Removing mandation for the smallest businesses is a welcome step forward and one less regulatory burden for SMEs to worry about.” (ICAEW)

This is a useful overview, provided by ICAEW: https://www.icaew.com/technical/tax/making-tax-digital

 

Are you still emailing sensitive information?

Monday, June 12th, 2017

For any professional managing information on behalf of clients, email is dead. It is not secure and highly susceptible to human error. How many times have you sent information to or received information from the wrong source? I am regularly wrongly emailed client documents by a highly intelligent, trusted professional simply because I have a very similar name to his client. It is completely understandable but it could have any number of repercussions.

A client portal is a cloud-based safe. The documents go in (added by you or your client), the recipient is notified and they are then retrieved. It is also subject to several layers of top-level security.

For the sake of your practice, your reputation and your clients’ trust, switch from email to a secure client portal before it is too late. We can help, advise and support a quick transition to a much safer and more professional way to communicate.

Why use docSAFE for collaboration?

Monday, June 5th, 2017

We’ve all been there – passing round a document for feedback via several people. We lose track of the most up to date version and then someone comments late on an early iteration. It makes for confusing and long-winded communications at the very least. At worst, it can lead to much bigger problems if the wrong versions are acted on or published externally.

With docSAFE, everyone accesses the same document. It is held in the central hub where one version exists. All participants visit the file in question and feedback in the same place. No more missed comments or version muddles. If only all of life could be made simpler so easily!

Take the next step, call us today
0121 794 0685