Like the rest of the U.S., the COVID pandemic has hit Providence businesses hard. Safeguarding your employees and customers is key. But so is protecting your business. To position it for long-term recovery, here are five tips:

Be wary of cyber scams.
Train your staff to spot suspicious activity and shore up cyber security measures to protect your data and assets.

Seek access to capital.
The Small Business Administration (SBA) offers several programs for financial relief, such as: the Economic Injury Disaster Relief Program which you can turn to for low-interest, long-term loans, and the SBA Payment Protection Program (PPP) loan, which may be fully forgivable and is administered by your local SBA approved lender. These PPP loans are available as Federal funding permits.

Reach out to your bank.
Certain SBA lenders can guide you through the process and may offer other kinds of help to ease COVID-induced stress, such as: relaxing loan terms or balance requirements, deferring payments and boosting lines of credit.

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Tap your banker’s connections.
Your business banker may have expertise in other industries and can share ideas that may be useful for solving your current challenges.

Stay informed.
Get updates from credible, reliable sources, such as government websites, so you’re aware of quickly changing information.

To learn more, go to

By Gregory Gould, Vice President, SBA Manager at Webster Bank
He can be reached at

The opinions and views in this article are those of the author, and are not intended to provide specific advice or recommendations for any individual. All loans are subject to the normal credit approval process. SBA guaranteed products may also be subject to additional terms, conditions and fees. The Webster Symbol is a registered trademark in the U.S.
Webster Bank, N.A. Member FDIC.
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