Cybercrime and fraud are serious threats, and constant vigilance is key. While our firm plays an important role in helping protect your assets, you can also take action to protect yourself and help secure your information. This checklist summarizes common cyber fraud tactics, along with tips and best practices. Many suggestions may be things you’re doing now, while others may be new.
Cyber criminals exploit our increasing reliance on technology. Methods used to compromise a victim’s identity or login credentials – such as malware, phishing, and social engineering – are increasingly sophisticated and difficult to spot. A fraudster’s goal is to obtain information to access your account and assets or sell your information for this purpose. Following best practices and applying caution when sharing information makes a big difference.
How we can work together to protect your information and assets:
- Keep us informed regarding changes to your personal information.
- Expect us to call you to confirm email requests to move money, trade, or change account information.
What you can do
- Be aware of suspicious phone calls, emails, and texts asking you to send money or disclose personal information. If a service rep calls you, hang up and call back using a known phone number.
- Never share sensitive information via email, as accounts are often compromised.
- Beware of phishing and malicious links. Urgent-sounding, legitimate-looking emails are intended to tempt you to accidentally disclose personal information or install malware.
- Don’t open links or attachments from unknown sources. Enter the web address in your browser instead.
- Check your email and account statements regularly for suspicious activity.
- Never enter confidential information in public areas. Assume someone is always watching.
Maintain updated technology
- Keep your web browser, operating system, antivirus, and anti-spyware updated, and activate the firewall.
- Turn off Bluetooth when it’s not needed.
- Dispose of old hardware safely by performing a factory reset or removing and destroying all storage data devices.
Use caution on websites and social media
- Do not visit websites you don’t know (e.g., advertised on pop-up ads and banners).
- Log out completely to terminate access when exiting all websites.
- Don’t use public computers or free Wi-Fi. Use a personal Wi-Fi hotspot or a Virtual Private Network (VPN).
- Hover over questionable links to reveal the URL before clicking. Secure websites start with “https,” not “http.”
In the busy world we live in, it is more important than ever to be vigilant. We’re here to help if you have questions. If you suspect a breach, call our office so that we can watch for suspicious activity and collaborate with you on other steps to take.