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Originally Posted On: https://www.tfnbtx.com/top-5-cybersecurity-tips-to-keep-your-personal-finances-safe/
In today’s digitally connected world, online banking has made checking your accounts more convenient than ever. However, no matter how efficient digital banking tools and apps may be, prioritizing the security of your personal finances is crucial to safeguarding your financial well-being from cybersecurity attacks. Cybercriminals are perpetually on the hunt for fresh targets. In 2022 alone, phishing, which is a type of cyberattack, reached an all-time high, with the APWG recording over 4.7 million attacks. If you’re not sure what to do, TFNB Your Bank for Life has compiled a checklist of cybersecurity tips you can put into place immediately to ensure the safety of your personal finances.
Avoid Clicking on Malicious or Suspicious Links
One of the most common ways cybercriminals gain unauthorized access to personal financial information is through malicious links, so it’s crucial to exercise caution when clicking on unfamiliar links. These links can be embedded in phishing emails or disguised as legitimate websites, tricking unsuspecting users into providing their sensitive information. Here are some handy reminders when it comes to fishy-looking websites, attachments or links:
- Always double-check the URL of a website before entering any login credentials or personal information. Cybercriminals often create fake websites that closely resemble legitimate ones, so it’s important to verify the website’s authenticity.
- Be wary of unknown email attachments or links. Even if the email appears to be from a reputable organization or individual, it’s best to independently verify its legitimacy before interacting with any links or attachments.
- Hover over a link to view its destination URL. This can help you identify if the link is redirecting you to a suspicious or malicious website. If the URL looks suspicious or differs from what you were expecting, it’s best to avoid clicking on it.
Remember, cybercriminals are constantly evolving their tactics, so it’s important to stay vigilant and keep your personal financial information secure. By being cautious and following these secure personal finance strategies, you can protect yourself from falling victim to phishing scams and malware attacks.
Be Careful About Cybersecurity on the Go
In today’s fast-paced world, managing your personal finances often involves being on the move. Whether you’re at a coffee shop, airport, hotel, or any other public place, it’s essential to maintain cybersecurity even when you’re away from home. Here are some tips to remember when on the go:
Be Cautious About Using Public Wi-Fi
Public Wi-Fi, although convenient can carry risks if you connect your device. You can protect your personal data by:
- Using your mobile network instead of public Wi-Fi when possible; it’s usually more secure.
- Creating a private Wi-Fi hotspot with your smartphone for multiple devices, ensuring a secure connection.
- Employing a VPN if you have to connect to a public Wi-Fi to encrypt your internet traffic and safeguard your financial data.
Pick Your Charging Sources Carefully
Those public phone charging sources sure look convenient but also carry security risks:
- Avoid Public Cords: Don’t use charging cords from unknown sources or public stations; they could contain malware or steal data.
- Stick With Direct Power Sources: In public, stick to your device’s original cord and connect it to a wall outlet for safer charging, reducing the risk of data compromise.
Use Strong Passwords and Enable Multifactor Authentication
If you’re like a lot of us, you often forget your password or use the same one over and over again. By combining strong, unique passwords with multifactor authentication, you significantly enhance the security of your personal finances.
Here are a couple of items to keep in mind:
Use unique passwords
Safeguarding your financial well-being begins by fortifying your passwords. Steer clear of common choices such as ‘123456’ or ‘password,’ and instead, create intricate combinations featuring uppercase and lowercase letters, numbers, and special characters.
Mix up your passwords
Resist the urge to use the same password for multiple accounts. By employing unique passwords for each account, you ensure that the security of your other accounts remains unaffected even if one password is compromised.
Enabling Multifactor Authentication
While robust passwords are essential, they are not foolproof. Cybercriminals can still find ways to hack your accounts. To add an extra layer of protection, we suggest enabling multifactor authentication. Multifactor authentication is an additional layer of security that requires more than just a password to access your accounts. Often, the MFA process combines what you know (a password) with what you have (like a phone code), or who you are (biometrics like fingerprints or facial recognition) to ensure proper verification.
Maintain Device Security
Do you know how you keep getting reminders to update your software or apps? Don’t ignore those pop-ups anymore. Regularly updating the software of your devices can actually help keep your personal data protected. Here’s what our IT experts recommend:
- Install Antivirus and Anti-Malware: Use reputable software to detect and remove malicious programs that may jeopardize your financial information.
- Run Security Software Updates: Regularly update your security software to stay guarded against new threats.
- Install Operating System and App Updates: Promptly install patches and updates for your OS and apps to fix vulnerabilities that cybercriminals might exploit.
- Enable Automatic Updates: Opt for automatic updates whenever possible to ensure your devices receive the latest security enhancements without manual checks.
Be Vigilant and Report Suspicious Activity
Stay vigilant and protect your personal finances by regularly reviewing your account activity and monitoring statements. If you notice any suspicious activity on your account, it’s important to report it immediately to your financial institution to prevent further unauthorized access. By taking an active role in monitoring your financial accounts, you can help prevent fraudulent activity and safeguard your hard-earned money.
One effective way to stay on top of your account activity is to set up regular email or text notifications from your financial institution. This way, you’ll receive alerts whenever there is a transaction or balance change, allowing you to quickly identify any unauthorized activity.
If you notice any suspicious transactions or suspect that your personal information has been compromised, you need to report it as soon as possible. Contact your bank or credit card company immediately to inform them of the issue and request a freeze on your account if necessary. They will be able to guide you through the steps to resolve the situation and protect your personal finances.
Remember that your financial institution is there to help you. They have dedicated teams that specialize in fraud prevention and customer support. If you have any concerns or questions about the security of your personal finances, don’t hesitate to reach out to them. They can provide guidance on the best practices for managing your accounts securely and offer assistance in the event of a security incident.
Prioritizing Your Financial Security at TFNB Your Bank for Life
By following these top cybersecurity tips, you can take proactive steps to protect your personal finances and ensure your private data stays safe in an increasingly digital world.
At TFNB Your Bank for Life, your data’s safety is our top priority. We employ robust security measures, including biometric authentication, encryption, and antivirus software, to protect your financial transactions. Rest assured, we blend cutting-edge technology with friendly, personalized service, just as your neighborhood bank should. Curious about our security? Reach out to your local banker today; we’re always here to help.