Cybercrime, or crime committed using a computer, continues to increase and evolve—with new types emerging all the time. While it sounds complex, some of the techniques fraudsters use to commit this type of crime are quite simple, and falling victim comes at a high cost of lost data, productivity and money. With October being Cybersecurity awareness month, and because we talk with customers every day who are impacted by cybercrime, we’re sharing some steps you can take to recognize and protect yourself from this threat—whether you’re on a computer or mobile device.
1) Become familiar with commonly used scamsProtecting your personal and financial information starts with knowing what to look out for. Here are three ways scammers, claiming to be your financial institution, will often try to trip you up:
- A text message asking you to sign into your account and/or provide personal information.
- An email prompting you to click a link and submit your personal information and/or download an attachment.
- A phone call asking you to verify your account number or provide your online banking password.
- Account number
- Username or password
- Social Security Number
- Security question and answer
Any of the information listed above that we need to know about you, we already have securely on file. When you contact us, we may ask you to confirm some of this information to verify your identity, but the key is that we will not contact you and ask for it. If you receive a call, text, or email you’re unsure of, call our 24/7 Customer Care Team directly at 800-860-8821 to confirm it was us.
2) Keep the technology you use secureIt’s always smart, and sometimes critical, to keep up with the latest software updates.
- Never ignore software or version updates on your laptop, phone, tablet, or apps. Patches and updates help protect your device and personal information.
- If they’re available, set up automatic updates to ensure you never fall behind.
3) Be smart with your passwordsA strong password is your first line of defense against cyber criminals.
- While it’s tempting to use the same password for all your accounts, passwords should always be unique and at least 10 characters long.
- Avoid writing your passwords down and use a secure password manager instead.
- Never autofill your passwords or credit card information on retail websites, where information may be more vulnerable to data breaches.
- Along with a strong password, set up a two-step authentication process if it’s available, this will provide an extra wall of security for your accounts and personal information.
For more tips on protecting your personal and financial information, visit our Security Center.