We are right in the middle of peak moving season! With over half of all moves occurring between the months of April and September, the opportunity for security risks and moving scams is high. There are many potential risks involved with moving, whether you’re relocating a single employee or an entire corporate headquarters. From cybersecurity risks to the prominence of moving scams, to companies damaging or losing your or your employee’s belongings, it’s imperative for organizations to be aware of the potential threats associated with relocation.
Understanding these risks and how you can best protect your relocating employees is the first step to ensuring they have a positive and safe relocation experience.
The Risk of Moving Scams Nationwide
On average, the Better Business Bureau receives 13,000 complaints about moving companies each year, and over 1,300 companies have an “F” rating from the bureau. Scammers often target individuals who are looking to move as cheaply as possible, the elderly, and people who have no moving experience.
Moving scams can take many forms. Scammers may request a deposit from movers, but either never show up to provide the service or request a higher price than initially quoted. In a possibly more nefarious scenario, a fraudulent moving company may pick up your items but refuse to deliver them unless they are paid a significant amount of money not disclosed in the initial quote. This has been termed a “hostage load,” and it’s a phenomenon that’s been gaining steam within the lucrative world of moving scams.
In the first eight months of 2021 alone, there were 932 reports of this type of scam to the U.S. Department of Transportation. Consumer Affairs recently published a guide on how to spot red flags in moving companies.
The Cybersecurity Risk
In this modern age of everything being digital, cybersecurity is more important than ever, even in a typically manual process like moving. The moving process often dictates that people provide a lot of information to many different outlets. Filing for a change of address or P.O. box, changing a phone number, or searching for moving companies all require a person to share personal information. Sharing this volume of data can leave an individual vulnerable to cybersecurity issues.
Bad actors can get their hands on this treasure trove of information by hacking or purchasing it from data brokers, who don’t always adequately review buyers. Organizations that may deal with private or sensitive information need to be hyper-aware of the risks a relocating employee faces during a move that may compromise their personal information along with data belonging to their employer. Companies must ensure that they’re educating their employees on these risks and assisting them in avoiding these issues. If an organization regularly has employees moving, instituting policies and tools that protect this data is essential.
Work with a Relocation Partner Who Can Help
Having a relocation partner can help alleviate concerns about scams and security risks, ensuring that relocating employees are cared for by qualified professionals throughout the moving process. If your company doesn’t have a relocation partner, employees who are in the relocation process are much more vulnerable to falling prey to these risks.
Employing a reputable, pre-selected relocation partner can help minimize the amount of information your employees give out by providing them with a knowledgeable team that can guide them on when and where to share personal info. Additionally, having a trusted moving service completely negates the opportunity for employees to unintentionally fall for a moving scam.
Taking care of your employee’s safety and well-being, especially during a move, is a top priority for organizations. Partnering with a qualified, trustworthy relocation provider is an effective way to do just that while benefiting your organization as well.
ABOUT HAZELWOOD ALLIED
Established in Santa Barbara in 1918, Hazelwood Allied is a full service relocation company providing national relocation and international moves for residential and commercial clients. Known as “The Careful Movers,” Hazelwood Allied is a Santa Barbara moving company with a strong track record for thorough and careful approaches to residential moves and commercial moves. Follow the Facebook page for exclusive offers and moving tips. Call 800-541-5958 for a free moving estimate.