Celebrating 20 Years in Business • 2004 - 2024

General Advice on Payroll Security

While it’s highly unlikely that you will be held responsible in the event that a third party hacks your payroll system, a data leak like that will more than likely result in negative outcomes, not only for you and your employees but between the two of you as well.

One of the biggest risks of having payroll information stolen from your company is that your employees will have to deal with identity theft for years to come. Additionally, your employees will likely hold you accountable and responsible for any damage they incur as a result of the data leak, even though they were not your fault.

However, even though data leaks or stolen information is not necessarily your fault, it will be your responsibility to salvage the situation on behalf of your employees. Plus, it may indicate poor data security on the part of your company, resulting in bad publicity for your business.

With proper payroll security, you can safeguard your company’s money as well as the data of everyone involved. So, in order to reduce the risk of serious issues that will cost you time, money and headaches down the road, it’s imperative that you enhance your company’s security measures when it comes to payroll.

Take charge of your security

Payroll is a part of every business, and it contains an incredible amount of personally identifiable information. And while this isn’t new information, it’s unfortunate that there are people out there who use this fact to their advantage. In fact, Forbes says that payroll fraud occurs twice as often to smaller businesses as to larger ones, which often comes down to security measures and the money that goes into them.

So, no matter your budget, what can you do to protect your business from identity theft, loss of information or stolen data? An inexpensive way to take charge of your company’s security is by educating your employees about proper data security measures. Make moves to train your employees on how to spot scams carried out via phishing emails and text messages.

It’s important to remind your employees to regularly alter their login information and professional credentials. A good rule of thumb is to change passwords every 60 to 90 days at a minimum.

This practice can help your employees minimize their risk of being a victim of data breaches or unwanted access to personal information. In the same vein, encourage your employees to opt into multifactor authentication.

Additionally, never leave your computer screen open or visible when you access employee information. People can do many ill-intentioned things with only a name and a Social Security number.

In fact, those two details alone are enough to steal someone’s identity. To protect these details, invest in a physical privacy filter to conceal your screen if you frequently work in open or public environments.

Consider all the situations

Restrict who has access to your payroll information, and ensure that any of your employees who have access to private information first complete a training program that informs them about payroll security measures. Also, double-check that the people who receive this security clearance are trustworthy.

Another thing to avoid when working in public places is a connection with unsecured Wi-Fi networks. Hackers openly operate in public because that’s where they can capture personal information. So, whenever you go online, make use of a virtual private network, and tell your employees to do the same.

Similarly, always log out of email accounts and other work profiles when you are not logged into them on your personal work device. Also, remind yourself and everyone else that logging into your work accounts from someone else’s computer can grant that person access to employee files if you are not careful. Similarly, the device you use might automatically save your username and password without your knowledge.

You should conduct an audit of payroll security. Along with an official audit, talk to your team and ask if they have encountered any system-related issues over the years.

In fact, you should make this check-in as regular as your audits. Employees often develop ways to work with or around issues instead of bringing them to light, so request full transparency from your employees to avoid a security breach.

Think strategically 

Allocate payroll duties among different employees. Instead of granting one person total access to everything, divide the responsibilities by asking one employee to handle timecards while another submits payroll and a third issues pay stubs.

By splitting up tasks like this, you can reduce the risk that one employee will change, alter or steal sensitive information from your company. Now, if your payroll department is only one person, make multiple accounts that can handle each part of the process instead.

Not only should you make sure physical copies of business documents are kept under lock and key, but it’s imperative that you consistently update the payroll software you use. When new updates are available, accept them immediately.

Also, if you can, it’s even better to choose software that automatically updates instead of requiring manual approval to do so. That way, you’ll never forget to update the software, because updates will be automated.

It’s wise to work with a payroll service provider that can help you ensure that your payroll data is secure and all personal information remains confidential. Make sure the data you store is also encrypted at every endpoint. Keep in mind that disk-level encryptions can prevent files from being of any use to people who steal company devices like laptops, cellphones or servers.

By encrypting data at that level, you’ll be taking yet another security measure to prevent online database breaches. Last but not least, perform vulnerability scans and penetration tests across your entire network to make sure there aren’t any holes in your security.

At the end of the day, it is essential that you take a very close look at the security measures you have in place for your payroll data. Doing so can help you determine if there is any possibility of a security breach.

Likewise, you can also determine if there have been any security breaches in the past. Ultimately, it’s better to be prepared than reactive, so if there’s one thing you do, make sure you implement security measures as soon as possible.


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Emily Gooding

Payroll Specialist

Emily is graduating in May with a BA in Business Administration from Lander University. She has gained valuable experience as a payroll intern for BMW. We are so excited to have her on the team and  to see her excel in her role as a Payroll Specialist.

Madison Capps​

Payroll Specialist

Madison received a BS in Psychology from Southern Illinois University in 2019. Since then, she has been working as a supervisor at Starbucks and earning her second degree, a BA in Administration and Accounting, from USC Aiken in the fall. She will be joining us as a Payroll Specialist and a valuable addition to our Paysmart team.

Kristen Wilby

Payroll Specialist

Before moving to South Carolina with her husband, Kristen worked as a Sales & Marketing Specialist for Premium King in Feasterville, PA, where she gained valuable experience in strengthening the brand and generating new business. Kristen also brings to our team several years of professional experience as an Executive Assistant and as an Office Manager, where she was first introduced to payroll. Kristen’s knowledge and her innate ability to establish genuine relationships contribute greatly to the team as we continue to grow and serve our clients.

Meg Whitaker

Payroll Specialist

Meg brings nearly twenty years of professional experience to the team. Most recently, she worked as a Payroll & Benefits Specialist in Centennial, Colorado. She and her husband recently moved back to the Carolinas for his job, and we were fortunate to find her! Before Colorado, Meg worked at CPI Security Systems in Charlotte, NC, for twelve years as a Billing Coordinator and Senior Administrative Assistant. She also gained three years of experience as an HR Assistant for a law firm in Fayetteville, NC. Her expertise significantly adds to our team and benefits our clients as we continue to grow!

Rachel McClaran, EA


Rachel plays a crucial role in developing Paysmart’s core processes and procedures, as well as overall strategy within the company. Rachel graduated from Bob Jones University and is an active member of the Junior League of Greenville and the South Carolina Association of CPAs. Her desire to serve her community has led her to become involved with several nonprofit organizations and to serve as the past Vice President of Finance for the Junior League of Greenville. Outside of the office,Rachel enjoys spending time on the water and traveling with her husband and their two children.

Hina Rogers

Payroll Specialist

Hina joined the Paysmart team in August 2022. She grew up in Portland, Oregon, before moving to Greenville, SC. She earned both a bachelor’s and a master’s degree in education. After college, she represented her alma mater as an enrollment counselor in the Southeast and Western states. She enjoys traveling, road trips, cooking, and quality time with her family. Hina looks forward to serving your company’s needs! 

Sharon Quantrille

Payroll Specialist

Sharon has spent several years in the accounting industry and has completed courses to hone her skills as a Payroll Specialist. Her background as an educator, professional musician, and Human Resources Generalist has contributed to her communication skills, commitment to professionalism, and organizational skills that make her a tremendous benefit to her Paysmart clients and colleagues. A graduate of Bob Jones University with a B.S. degree in Music Education, a Master of Music degree in Piano Performance and a Human Resources Generalist Certificate, Sharon spends her free time gardening, hiking, playing the piano, and spending time with her four adult children.

Haleigh Bates

Payroll Specialist

Haleigh joined our team in May of 2022 as a payroll specialist. Haleigh has over eight years of experience helping personal and small business clients with their financial needs. She received her Bachelor’s Degree from Georgia Southern University. She enjoys spending time with her husband and their three children, Caden, Addie, and Mason.  She likes to go hiking, spend time at the beach, and volunteer at her church in the children’s ministry. 

Courtney Rossello

Payroll Tax Manager

Courtney joined the team at Paysmart Payroll Services in September 2020.  She was raised in Simpsonville, SC, and graduated from Clemson University in 2009 with a bachelor’s degree in political science and a concentration in public administration.  Courtney began her payroll career in 2011 and currently works in the payroll tax department at Paysmart.  She strives to make every client feel comfortable knowing their payroll taxes and tax returns are handled accurately and efficiently.  Courtney is also a volunteer Treasurer for a local middle school in Greenville County.  In her spare time, she enjoys volunteering with special needs children, road trips, and spending time with her two daughters. 

Emily Hargrave

Senior Payroll Specialist

Emily received her bachelor’s degree in music from West Coast Baptist College. Since her college days, Emily has gained nearly 18 years of experience in office operations and project management. Emily joined Paysmart in 2017 and enjoys using her skills to support clients and the Paysmart team.

 At heart, Emily is a small-town country girl from the Midwest but is happy now to call the Upstate home, where she doesn’t have to endure harsh winters. Emily’s favorite ways to spend her free time are reading a good book, challenging herself with puzzles, and doing her best not to kill the plants in her garden.

Julie Shull

Client Success Specialist

Julie is the Client Success Specialist for Paysmart Payroll.  She joined the team as a Payroll Specialist in March of 2020. She received her Bachelor of Science degree from NC State University and earned an MBA from Gardner-Webb University while playing on the GWU women’s tennis team. After starting her career with Wilson Sporting Goods as a Financial Analyst, she took a few years off to raise twin boys until she began working for Greenville County Schools in 2014.  Julie enjoys spending time with her family and outdoor activities.

Brad Detandt

Payroll Administrator

A graduate of Northland International University with a BA in Counseling, Brad Detandt leads the day-to-day operations of the Paysmart team. He is eager to grow the firm’s client portfolio. He brings a diverse employment background in retail, manufacturing, nonprofit ministries, and business development, with
a specialized focus on team development and process improvement. Brad’s professional – and personal – mission is to “Be Great. Serve!” Brad enjoys spontaneous activities and weekend trips to state parks with his wife Miranda and his three children.

Stephen C. Stokes

Managing Partner

Stephen has more than 14 years’ experience working with individuals and businesses to meet their tax, accounting, and payroll needs. He has been the managing partner of Paysmart Payroll Services since January 2009. He is a licensed certified public accountant in South Carolina and Georgia. Stephen is also a member of the South Carolina Association of CPAs, the Georgia Society of CPAs, the American Institute of CPAs, and the Professional Association of Small Business Accountants. He has a bachelor’s degree from Bob Jones University and a master’s degree from Georgia State University. Stephen was born and raised near Atlanta, Georgia and moved to Greenville, South Carolina, several years ago. He enjoys spending time with his wife, Tiffani, and daughters, Madeline and Julianna. He is actively involved in his church and enjoys reading, sports, and other outdoor activities.