Is your church accounting system safe online?

Anytime you have information stored online there is some inherent risk. That is not saying that we should avoid putting our information online, but we should always be cautious. Having your church's accounting system online can be dangerous for a couple of reasons that will be discussed below.

1. Internet Security Issues

A hacker could maliciously enter your online database that contains all of your important church management information and steal or delete the information. We won't get into the technical jargon of how they might accomplish this, just know that they can.

2. Your Online Software Company Goes Out of Business

If you have your information stored online through one of the many online software systems, then you run the risk of your online software provider going out of business and trashing your data.

We're not saying we're completely against having all of your church management data online, but we recommend caution when this information is online. Always have a physical backup of your church accounting software data.


  1. In addition to this I will mention that there are risk to systems that are on the Church’s own computers. I am not totally disagreeing about the risk of data online however the post was very one sided and I wanted to ensure that people do not get a false sense of security just because their data is on a server at their church.

    For example, churches get broken into – what is the first thing they steal? – Computers. Where is your data at – on that computer. Another item to look at is natural catastrophe or something like a church building be burned down. The first item that was mentioned was deleting of data if someone gets in. Most companies will do backups of their data. So the deleting is really not a huge issue, however the stealing is. That would be what I would be more worried about. Keep in mind that when things are done online the church is paying for a service and with that service they are hiring the company’s expertise to manage that data probably better than any church would. The churches just don’t have the resources to pay an IT expert 60K+ a year to ensure their data is safe. That is why many go to an online solution to ensure that job is taken care of using only a fraction of the cost.

    The second issue can be mitigated a little by going with a company that has been around for awhile and I don’t mean 5 or so years. If they been around for 10+ years it is highly doubtful that they will go out of business. They have gone through the storms so to speak. I am not trying to say none of these point are valid however they also apply to software that is not online. What happens if a company goes out of business and you have their product on your servers? Yeah you have your data but what good is it if you can not get it out of the system into another software package. How about the cost of converting the data to another package. So the issue raised on the post really are not confined to only online systems but both types of systems.

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