During the coronavirus pandemic the IRS is accepting the faxing of forms 1139, 1045 and 3115 which reminded us of the importance of fax security. Andrew Lassise discusses the topic on this episode of the Tech Talk for Accountants Show.
As a tech company, faxing seems old school. But of course, there are advantages and many companies that fax nowadays do so from their computers, which of course means online fax security needs to be in place.
One way to fax of course is through an old-school/traditional fax machine like is pictured with the article. Another way is to fax via an online program. Using an online program to send a fax is kind of like emailing a fax number.
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Benefits of faxing physical documents
Fax machines aren’t victims to malware like a computer can be. With the increase in working from home during COVID we have seen more ransomware attacks. Sending a fax can circumvent some of the issues.
Faxes are hard to intercept from a distance like how data breaches happen. A physical fax machine breach would usually have to happen on-site near the fax machine.
Cons of faxing
A lot of business is now done digitally and when you have physical copies you have to have systems in place for physical documents and digital documents.
When people aren’t in the office, a physical fax machine can present problems. On email, you could just set up a distribution list or an inbox so the right people can see the fax when it arrives.
Faxing in a digital environment
There are steps you can take and that your managed services provider can help you with when you fax online (i.e.: without a physical fax machine):
- Use basic security protocols
- Consider a cloud-based system
In this environment you fax from an email to a fax number. That fax number may also be connected to an email address without your knowledge.
Use a software tool that specializes in this setup to ensure it’s all set up correctly and safely. Need tips on what software to buy for your faxing, just drop us a note here and we are happy to help
“The digital fax movement makes us think ‘is fax security an actual thing’?” asked Andrew on the podcast. “If you need to have a fax number, the online way of going is the way to go. Personally, I’m still on Team Email, but if push comes to shove the digital way is really the way to go.”
From a health perspective, especially during COVID, faxing from our computers can also cut down the number of hands touching things.
“It can help us stop the spread of it,” Andrew said. “Maybe we’ll see see a push toward digital fax machines since not everyone always is in the office.”