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Brian Danzinger Publishes Online Safety Tips
Five Ways to Stay Safe Online and help protect you from fraud.
By: Brian Danzinger - District 11
Acknowledging and understanding security threats exist allows you to take steps to protect yourself from fraud and other issues. Consider doing the following to safely manage your finances online:
• Use complex passwords – Pick a strong password that is not easily recognizable and don't write it down or keep it stored in a Word document. Also avoid using the same password for all of your accounts.
• Avoid saving info in your email – Hotmail and Gmail are frequent targets of online hacks. Avoid sending account information to yourself or storing passwords or financial information in email. Additionally, shred documents that contain personal or financial information and consider switching to e-Statements in place of paper statements.
• Never share your information – According to the FBI Internet Crime Center, there's been a 270 percent increase in phishing scams since 2015. These types of attacks usually involve a phone call or email that attempts to gain access to your accounts. If you receive a suspicious call or email, reach out to your financial institution or service provider to see if it's legit before providing personal or financial info.
• Look for a padlock – This icon is usually located in the address bar when you visit a secure website. It's especially important to look for this icon on sites where you enter your personal information or make a purchase using your debit or credit card.
• Update your browser and antivirus software – Although it's tempting to not make updates, these security patches are critical to make sure you have the most secure environment possible. Also, be careful when using public WIFI – it's not always the most secure and could provide an opportunity for someone to steal your information.
It's also a good idea to regularly monitor your accounts. We recommend reviewing your accounts online at least once a week. Make sure all of the activity and posted transactions are accurate and that you're up to date on any security updates. It's also smart to add e-alerts that let you know if your balance dips below a certain threshold as this may signal unauthorized activity on your account.
For more information on the author, visit http://www.briandanzinger.com