​​​​​Disaster: Plan and Recover Toolkit

All tax professionals should have an emergency preparedness plan. It is recommended that your plan includes securing and duplicating essential documents, creating lists of property and knowing where to find information once a disaster has occurred.

Paperless recordkeeping

Many people receive bank statements and documents by e-mail. This method is an outstanding way to secure financial records. Important tax records such as W-2s, tax returns and other paper documents can be scanned onto an electronic format. Don't forget to document your valuables and business equipment. This will help you recall and prove the market value of items for insurance and casualty loss claims.

Business continuity plan

How quickly your company can get back to business after a disaster often depends on emergency planning done today. Start planning now to improve the likelihood that your company will survive and recover. Review your emergency plans annually. Just as your business changes over time, so do your preparedness needs. When you hire new employees or when there are changes in how your company functions, you should update your plans and inform your people. Work from home or hybrid workforces add complexity to business systems and multiply the cybersecurity risks. Different protocols exist for these environments.

Four steps to developing an effective business continuity plan

  1. Identify threats or risks
  2. Conduct a business impact analysis
  3. Adopt controls for prevention and mitigation
  4. Test, exercise and improve your plan routinely

More details of each of these steps can be found on Traveler's website , including other tools such as performing a business risk assessment.

Download: Sample business continuity plan

Business recovery checklist

We know that major disasters and emergencies in your area will affect many families and businesses. Having plans in place can bring a bit of solace.


Download: Sample business recovery checklist

Download: Client newsletter on preparing for a disaster and relief options​​

Data loss

Sometimes disasters are man-made, such as when computer hardware fails and client data has not been backed up or criminals access client information . Tax professionals are prime targets for cybercriminals. Your clients’ information – bank and investment account information, social security numbers, medical records, birth dates, and more – offers a virtual goldmine for identity thieves. As more and more sensitive client information is stored and transmitted online, that goldmine continues to grow in value. For the protection of your clients, your business, and yourself, data security is more critical now than ever.

Download: Protecting Against Data Loss article and steps​​

Download: Tax-related identity theft guide

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