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Qld firm loses millions in highly sophisticated cyber crime scam

The Brisbane Times has recently published an article outlining a sophisticated digital scam that has seen two Queensland law firms losing several millions of dollars after falling victim to scammers. 

The cyber criminals sent an email scam under the guise of a potential new client - once the law firm’s victims clicked on the email hackers quickly took over the email accounts of staff at the law firms and hijacked payments from their clients.

The process for getting access to the staff members' emails is outlined below:

  • The scammer emailed the law firm expressing interest in using their services
  • Once the scammer says they will go ahead and use the services of the firm they send a link with 'documents' that the firm will need which requires email and password for access - this is the step the hacker requires to gain access to the login details to the staff member

Once they have hacked into the computer the next step for the hacker is outlined below:

  • The hacker monitors the legal staff member’s email account watching for info about payments 
  • Once they see an opportunity to gain access to money from the client, the scammer poses as the law firm and reminds them of payment and provides information for a bogus bank account rather than the trust account info.

The scam is difficult to detect, and it can be very challenging for law firms and clients to notice any suspicious activity until it is too late. 

Companies across all industries should be vigilant to ensure that scammers and hackers are kept at bay by ensuring a wide range of security measures are in place for all correspondence and online data. 

Keeping up to date with cyber crime and the scams being activated can be a challenge, however by taking appropriate steps to protect data companies can ensure the highest level of protection from hackers and scams. 

Read original article here

Getting your finances in order

Top financial goals to consider

2018 has well and truly kicked off, now is a great time to get your financial goals in order for the new year. 

ASIC is driving Australians to kick start the new year on a positive note and get on top of their finances. 

Taking control of individual finances need not be a chore, so long as you have some goals in place to help you on your way to prosperity. 

Here are some top goals to consider to get you financially secure in 2018:

Make a financial plan for your finances

While it might seem a little dry to sit down and write out a plan if you are wanting to get ahead, Australians are being encouraged to set a financial plan in place. Be sure to include a budget to manage your money and curb your spending habits for a more financially prosperous 2018.

Get rid of debt

If you have had personal debt before of your own money on your credit card or car loan now is the time to take control of your debts and pay off larger balances so you can get rid of the credit debt for good. The interest you pay could be used instead for savings or money for a rainy day. 

Create a savings account

Don’t just stuff your extra cash in your day to day spending account, make a savings account and set goals so that you can pay for the holiday of your dreams or even a new car in cash!

Review your insurance policies 

We can all be a little relaxed when it comes to insurance policies for your car, health or even life insurance - but have you checked that you have the right policy for your needs? Your situation may have changed since you set up the policy and you might be paying too much for your insurance. Shop around and get a better deal and put the difference you save towards your savings account. 

Consolidate your super

If you have had a few jobs over the years and multiple super accounts, 2018 is a great time to roll everything together so you can maximise your super and make some extra contributions for your future. Don’t be lazy and leave it for another day, get yourself and your super sorted so you can grow your superannuation policy to meet your needs upon retirement. 

By reviewing these five simple tips, you could be on your way to making 2018 a year of prosperity for your finances.

Read the original article here.

Overcoming obstacles within business with digitistation


These days the business landscape is filled with digitalisation and automation, and the process of implementing new technology can be unclear for SMSF firms and a range of businesses. 

While the process of adopting new technology can be a minefield, the benefits are tremendous for improving business systems and enhancing the overall functioning of the workplace to ensure your business is firing on all cylinders. 

Adding digitisation to your business effectively transforms your organisation, yet it does require you to change your culture, approach and technologies, and this is something that can be a challenge for some organisations. 

Digitisation will enable your business to connect with people, process data more efficiently and provide intelligence and actionable insights.

Reasons why digitisation is essential for the future of your business:

Improvements in decision making and the streamlining of processes

Digitisation works to deliver positive outcomes for your business by streamlining and accelerating processes while increasing productivity and reallocating employees to higher-work value. 

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How to create a flexible workplace for all employees


In today’s workplace, there is often a mix of both younger and older employees, and strategies should be in place to ensure that business owners and managers are creating a flexible and attractive work environment. 

There are certainly challenges creating a flexible working environment for all employees including attracting and retaining younger staff, transferring the knowledge and experience of older staff approaching retirement and meeting the needs of today’s ‘virtual’ employee who expects varying hours and work-life balance. 

Here are some tips for creating a flexible workplace for all:

Manage and understand millennials

Accounting firms and business, in general, should respond to this generation and understand their career motivations. Tips for creating flexibility in the workplace for this group of workers include providing transparency around career pathways and focusing on providing opportunities for growth and development. Millennials bring a great deal to the table in a workplace including a deep understanding of processes, policies, programs and technologies, they are also able to adapt to change which is essential in today’s ever-changing environment. 

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