How to Check if a Company is Legitimate

In today’s complex digital environment, it’s essential to take your time to research every single company that you’re interested in doing business with. 

Whether you’re a small business or a big enterprise, the consequences of dealing with an illegitimate company are always harmful. For instance, let’s say that a young startup signed a contract with a supplier that doesn’t actually exist. That means the company got burnt and lost time and money resources. And let’s not forget third parties and customers; they all require running a series of background checks.

Make Sure to Review the Company’s Website 

Naturally, certain red flags raise suspicion regarding the business’ authenticity. First things first, if you can’t find any contact information listed on the website, such as a legitimate phone number, and there’s no way to contact the company, chances are the business might not be genuine. The easiest way to check if the phone number is valid is by calling it. If it’s disconnected, that’s automatically a bad sign. 

Remember that today, having an email address isn’t the most trustworthy indicator of the legitimacy of a company. That’s because emails and domain names are obtained easier compared to offline contact information.

Study the Address Information

Address fraud remains one of the most common types of fraud today.

If you suspect that a company is fake, check the website and the listed address details. If there’s no address, take it as an instant red flag. Don’t be afraid to ask the company questions. You can also always phone the company and ask the manager to describe the surrounding area. Once you have this information, you can use Google Maps to check if it matches the description.

In case it’s a local business, as an alternative to the internet, you can visit the physical address to determine the location’s legitimacy. You can indeed learn a lot about a company by visiting its brick-and-mortar location. 

Check the Company Number

A company’s registration number is a form of identification. The unique number is assigned by the national registration office and is commonly used in different legal contexts. The company number should be listed in the privacy policy or its terms and conditions if a business is legitimately registered.

Check if the Company Has a Privacy Policy

In general, having a privacy policy means that the company’s registered address and name are genuine, as this information needs to be included. Real companies have detailed Terms and Conditions and Terms of Use pages as well. Before doing any business with the company, always review the policies and look for suspicious-sounding language.

Search for Feedback and References

One of the most effective ways to find out if a company is legitimate is to search for feedback or any other forms of customer reviews online. The company’s website is one thing, but other websites and sources can provide more trustworthy details about the business.

With all of that said please make sure you do the following if you are questioning the legitimacy or before signing with a company….

  1. Make Sure to Review the Company’s Website. …
  2. Study the Address Information. …
  3. Check the Company Number. …
  4. Check if the Company Has a Privacy Policy. …
  5. Search for Feedback and References. …

If you take out the time to ensure that the company is registered and legitimate, then this could save you a great deal of trouble in the future.

If you are having issues with a company’s legitimacy or your overall organizations security posture contact Mission Critical Systems today.

FREE – Risk Assessment

Identify your organization’s risks and receive guidance on how to mitigate those risks – FREE!

Learn more >

Scroll to Top