5 Tips to Keep Your Financial Information Secure

This is the time of the year where scammers and hackers are lurking to take advantage of unsuspecting people and steal their identity and financial information.

Whether it’s shopping online or a phone call about insurance or another service, always be vigilant to protect your information. Scammers have gotten more and more creative at acting legitimate, causing more people to fall for their tactics.

Here are some tactics to implement as you work to protect your financial and personal information:

1. Be Skeptical

If something looks fishy or sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Think before clicking on a link from an unknown sender. Most current email services are good at filtering out spam, but always make sure the sender is legitimate before opening an email. Don’t be afraid to ask questions. There’s nothing wrong with vetting a situation thoroughly before engaging.

2. Screen Phone Calls

One way to vet people is to screen phone calls. Scammers prey on unsuspecting people answering calls from unknown numbers. Let unknown numbers go to voicemail. If it’s someone who legitimately wants to get in touch with you, they will leave a message, and you can decide whether you want to call back. iPhone and Android smartphones now have an option that allows you to direct unknown numbers to go straight to voicemail so that you’re not bothered. Scammers have also gotten creative at using phone numbers in the same area code as yours or nearby so it looks more legitimate. Unless you’re expecting a call from someone whose number you don’t have, let it go to voicemail on the first call.

3. Use Two-Factor Authentication

Most social media and other services now allow you to set up two-factor authentication, which requires you to enter multiple layers of information to log in to an account. This usually includes having a code sent to your phone that only you have access to. This is just another layer of protection to prevent someone easily logging in to your account. This time of the year is also a good time to change or update your passwords, just to be safe.

4. Don’t Post Bank Information in Vulnerable Places

This seems obvious, but there are people who willingly share their credit card information online in a public forum or via text messages. If you are sharing your card information with a friend or family member, make sure they are trustworthy and share the information in person rather than via phone or text.

5. Use Secure Websites and Internet Connections

If you prefer to shop online rather than at a store, make sure the websites you use are secure, with an SSL certificate. Google has started requiring every website it promotes to have one of these, which helps, but you can determine if it does by looking for a “lock” icon on the far left of the URL. Also look for https:// in the web address.

Avoid making purchases while using public WiFi. Hackers often tap into unsecured WiFi connections to easily steal information. Use a secure or private WiFi connection to make purchases.

Land Shark Shredding offers shredding and information destruction services throughout Kentucky and in Tennessee, Illinois, and Indiana.

For more security tips, please call us at 270-793-0880 or complete the form on this page.

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