Data security means keeping credit card, finance, and other customer data safe and secure. It is fast becoming (in fact, it already is) an issue small businesses need to get serious about. There have been so many high-profile leaks and a plethora of credit card scams which means you have to start taking data security seriously to protect your customers. Here are a few ways you can keep your car wash safe and maintain an elevated sense of awareness going into the new year.

Protect documents and devices

One of the main ways security is breached is through physical documents getting into the wrong hands and computers or other devices where you collect financial or client information becoming compromised. Make sure you keep all important documents secure by having a locked file system and clear process for handling documents from credit card receipts to supply orders and the like. Devices should be kept secure as well which means using password protection on not only computers but also tablets or smartphones if they are used within your business.

You should have a protocol for processing old paperwork and documents including a shredding schedule. Older paperwork can still contain important information like credit card numbers, contact information, and finances pertaining to your business. By shredding regularly and keeping files secure from beginning to end you can increase your data security and keep things away from the prying eyes of employees.


Employees are one of the main avenues for a data security breach and it only takes one person to compromise your whole business. Security steps should start with a background check on each employee before they’re hired to ensure your new hires are of the caliber you’re looking for. Potential employees should also provide at least two references which should be verified before hiring.

Once employees are on staff make sure each employee has a user login to access the computer, tablets, or other devices you use to run your operation. This should be separate from an administrator login as you want to make sure you control who downloads software and when systems are updated. Passwords should be secure which means they are fairly complicated and are changed regularly. It only takes one employee to breach your system so if you have a frequent employee turnover it’s a good idea to change your passwords regularly.

Wireless and privacy policies

If you offer wireless internet it’s a good idea to make this connection password protected. This will protect your company because a password is necessary to access the network, which keeps your business computers safe from hackers who may be sitting in your lobby. For customers, you should have a separate access point with a password separate from your business side of things and change this password frequently as well. By keeping things fresh you can avoid people skimming your connection from outside or nearby businesses which will help keep customers safe while they use your connection.

It’s a good idea to have a privacy policy as well so everyone knows what information you gather from them and how you keep it safe. Customers don’t want their contact information sold to another company or third party and want to know their credit cards are safe. Having a privacy policy will help keep everyone on the same page.