Archive for May, 2012
Wednesday, May 16th, 2012
Many workforce travelers look forward to a free Wi-Fi connection to when staying in a hotel for business travel. Whether they’re checking work email, catching up with friends and family, looking for transactions in their bank accounts or just surfing the net after a long day, Wi-Fi is a definite plus when spending time on the road. Unfortunately, hackers also enjoy the service, making the idiom “don’t look a gift horse in the mouth” a falsehood. You should definitely look at these horse choppers and purchase some bite insurance.
According to Business Travel News, hackers are using free hotel Wi-Fi to load malware in the form of software updates onto your smart phone, computer or Ipad. A warning was issued by the Internet Crime Complaint Center (ICCC) after several instances were reported by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and other government agencies. As if road warriors didn’t have enough to worry about, now you need to be doubly cautious and ensure your data and hardware is protected.
Malware, short for malicious software, is software designed to disrupt computer operation, gather sensitive information, or gain unauthorized access to computer systems. Malware includes computer viruses, worms, trojan horses, etc.
What does this mean for the business traveler? There are a variety of possible outcomes depending on the type of malware. Slow load times, loss of personal data and computer failure are all possibilities. What can you do to protect yourself? The ICCC recommends that you check digital certificates of all updates, perform software updates before you travel and only download updates from trusted vendor websites while on the road.
Monday, May 14th, 2012
Have you audited your company expense reports or travel policy lately? Many of your fellow business owners are. Mary Ann McNulty of Business Travel News reports that company audits are up, perhaps in part to the U.S. General Services Administration (GSA) spending debacle. While you can probably rest assured that your expenses aren’t as egregious as the GSA’s, it’s always a good idea to take the pulse of your travel program.
Are your workforce travelers turning in justifiable expenses, or sliding unwarranted expenditures through a loose interpretation of your company’s travel policy? If your answer is: “I don’t know” or “I’m not really sure,” it may be a good time to take a closer look at employee expense reports. You can only manage what you measure.
Do certain trends appear upon analysis of expense reports? Do you notice that employees are staying a little too close to home? Do some expenses look more pleasure, than business related? With data in hand, the next step is to make changes to your travel policy and put additional controls in place.
A good travel policy is an evolving document that is reviewed annually. It should explicitly identify what is acceptable such as per diem policy, hotel rate range and personal use. Control hotel prices by limiting hotel types, prices and locations. Describe what receipts are needed for per diem allowances. Spell out the consequences for abuse and enforce them. Controls increase efficiency while limiting unpleasant surprises at the end of the year.
Unsure where to start? With savings of 20-40% on hotels nationwide and in Canada, CLC Lodging provides the service and metrics to improve your travel policy and bottom line. Go to www.clclodging.com for more information today.