By making a few changes to your devices and accounts, you can maintain security against outside parties’ unwanted attempts to access your data, as well as protect your privacy from those you don’t consent to sharing your information with. Follow these simple steps to protect yourself and your information online.
Keep Your Account Secure
- Never disclose your user name and or password to anyone.
- Never reuse a password or passphrase on multiple websites.
- Review your financial accounts for suspicious transactions.
- Access your financial online banking with a trusted computer that:
- Has current antivirus and firewall software
- Has a pop-up blocker to prevent malicious advertisements
- Has automatic security updates
- Be wary of phishing emails and social engineering attacks.
- Trust your instincts. If you have a feeling something is not right, you are probably correct.
Keep Your Device Safe
- Be cautious using Public Wi-Fi.
Public Wi-Fi networks are easy targets for hackers. Don’t set up your devices to automatically connect to Wi-Fi, turn off sharing settings and use a VPN when possible. It’s safer to use your data plan to connect wirelessly when entering passwords, credit card information or other details that you need to keep secure.
- Install mobile security software on your device.
This protects you against malicious software (malware) and computer viruses.
- Install software to find and remotely wipe your mobile phone.
This software can help you locate your phone via GPS or remotely remove all data from your device, if it’s lost or stolen.
- Question QR codes.
QR codes (short for “quick response codes”) are images that contain data that can be read by your phone’s camera. Scammers have been known to create fake QR codes that automatically download malware onto your mobile device. Protect yourself by not scanning QR codes posted in public spaces. Fraudsters will often place a fraudulent QR code sticker on top of a legitimate advertisement like a billboard or transit ad.