Cyber security is a common buzzword, but what does it really look like? Everything these days can be done online and most of us utilize online banking systems to access our financial accounts. The security of those accounts is of utmost importance, and we can’t just rely on the institutions themselves to protect us. We have to do our part to make sure our online accounts are secure – just like we secure our house every day by locking the front door. Whether you have just a few bank accounts or a large portfolio, we all need the same level of cyber security knowledge to properly protect our assets. So what should we all be doing to protect ourselves from the cyber threats that penetrate our inboxes and cell phones almost every day?
Here are 4 simple steps to improve your financial security:
1. Create complex passwords. Include numbers and symbols so that they are harder to guess.
2. Use a password manager. Rather than writing down your passwords in a notebook (or even worse, on your phone), download one of the many trusted password manager apps. That way, you don’t have to remember or type in your complex passwords! Just copy and paste from your password manager, and you’re in.
3. Enable dual-factor authentication whenever available. Set up your cell phone as the authentication device (rather than email) so that no one else can access the security code.
4. Don’t click on suspicious links. Keep an eye out for emails/texts that are from unfamiliar senders, and don’t click on anything unexpected that sounds urgent. This is usually a sneaky way to get someone to disclose personal information quickly.
Putting these steps into action can feel daunting, but it is worth the time and energy. We know how hard you worked to earn what you have; it’s now time to protect it. Working through this exercise will not only bolster your financial security but will also empower you with the knowledge you need to participate in financial conversations.
If you have any questions or would like to discuss how to improve your financial security, please contact us.
Please see the PDF version of this document for important disclosures.