Technology enables us to do a multitude of things quickly and easily – especially during these times when many are working remotely. If you’re a landlord renting out your income property, it is likely you are having prospective tenants email you their applications, electronically sign lease agreements, etc. But have you stopped to think about the protections you have in place to prevent information from being stolen?
Though we all know email hijackers and malware are out there, it can be easy to forget just how rampant they are. Add to that a global pandemic, these digital thieves thrive on taking advantage of vulnerable people during a crisis. Being that you have the liability of handling other people’s personal information, you don’t want to fall prey to such a breach.
Between 35,000-70,000 new strains of malware hit the internet DAILY! Think about how easy it would be for a hijacker to email you a link or attachment to their “application” and invade your computer. It happens more often than you would think!
That’s why, at True Property Management, we use a secure, high-tech software for all tenant communications, applications, leases, etc. Our application process is entirely online through this secure portal which will collect and safely store each applicant’s personal info. In fact, we will never personally ask an applicant for their social security number! Our system will verify that in the application by running a full background check, thus relieving our owners of that liability. It also securely stores account information for both tenants and landlords so rent can be paid easily online and deposited to our owners in as little as one business day via direct deposit.
If you’re managing your property(ies) yourself, you may want to rethink using your Gmail to collect personal info. Once a strain of malware has infected your computer (something that can happen with the simple click of a button), every applicant that has ever sent personal info to your email and anything stored on your computer is jeopardized. If you plan on hiring a professional to help you, make sure they have these securities in place. If you’re going about it on your own, we suggest looking into a secure system for this. It may be costly, but it’s worth the investment for the relief of liability.