Remember the days when you had to visit the bank to deposit every paycheck? Or actually fill out a withdrawal form to get cash in hand?
For most people, this seems like an archaic way of life. And a lot of younger adults may have never felt the dread of waiting behind a line of cars to hit the bank drive-thru on a Friday afternoon.
Needless to say, online banking has made handling finances tremendously easier. There’s no 800 numbers just to find out your balance before writing a check. (Are people still writing personal checks?) And before direct deposit, that fear of losing your paycheck before you make it to the bank, phew – there were certainly some close calls for a lot of people.
Nowadays, online banking makes our lives easier. But it always creates the need for strong cybersecurity for online banking.
Cybersecurity For Banking: How To Keep Your Personal Data Safe
You’ve worked too hard to let strangers steal your money. Follow these tips to keep your finances and personal data safe.
1. Keep Passwords Unique & Change Them Often
If you have any type of online bank account, it is crucial that you stay on top of your passwords. Not only do they need to be unique, but you need to change them often.
There are so many ways hackers can access your online information. And once they do, you better believe they’re going to try to access your online bank accounts. It’s not like they’re in the business of integrity and values, you know?
Imagine if one of your frequented websites or accounts experiences a data breach. It might not seem like a big deal if all they have is your name, email, and password for that one account. But what if you use that password to log in to several different websites? Said hacker now has easy access to all of them. This is why it’s so important to use different passwords for every single account, website, software, etc.
In addition to always using different passwords for everything (and yes, I mean everything), the passwords need to be unique and hard to guess. For instance, avoid using birthdays, anniversaries, addresses, your pet’s names, your spouse’s pet name, your 3rd cousin twice removed’s Instagram handle. In all honesty, you’re better off just banging on the keyboard with your eyes closed to come up with a totally random sequence of letters and numbers.
However, we do recommend using a combination of upper and lower case letters, numbers, and special characters. Consider something like this: l3ro0k$1T. And keep in mind this is just an example. We would never actually use any combination that looks anything remotely close to the name of our business. That would just be too easy for a hacker to guess.
2. Regularly Update Your Defensive Software
Do you have a habit of ignoring prompts to update your antivirus, antispyware, or antimalware software? Starting today, make a promise to yourself to cut that out.
For the safety of your business, employees, and finances, you really need to keep your defensive software up to date. Hackers are coming up with new ways to infiltrate vulnerable systems every day, if not more. If you’re not taking the steps to protect yourself online, then you’re basically setting out a welcome basket for online predators looking to cause you harm.
Moreover, defensive software, like your antispyware and antivirus, work by staying up to date on the latest threats. The software only gets the new information through updates. And when you avoid the updates, your computer and online activity become more and more vulnerable every second.
Take the task of keeping up with your network security off your plate. Contact us to find out how our IT managed services can keep your network secure and efficient.
3. Keep Tabs On Your Account Funds
When it comes to your finances, don’t leave anything up to chance. You should always know what is in your account. Furthermore, you should stay aware of all incoming and outgoing payments and transfers.
A simple way to do this is to log in to your account regularly and review all activity. An even easier way to stay abreast of all activity is to set up text notifications. For instance, you can have your bank send you a text message every time there is any activity, even a simple coffee purchase.
If you notice any irregular activity, notify your bank immediately. Additionally, that means it’s time to change your password again.
4. Keep Your Phone, Tablet, & Computer Secure
You may be the only person who uses your phone, tablet, or computer. But what if they ended up in the wrong hands? Even worse, what if they didn’t have any type of passcode or password protection to gain access?
This is a common mistake made by people who live alone. Because if you’re not keeping your roommates or children out of your devices, your regular day-to-day routine seems safe enough to not have a password.
But people leave devices in rideshares, on restaurant tables, they fall into couch cushions, and even worse – they are hot items for thieves to steal. If your unprotected device ends up in the wrong hands, even the most amateur hacker could easily steal your hard earned money.
5. Only Access Online Bank Accounts On Secure WiFi Networks
Would you lay your bank statements across a coffee shop for everyone to read? Probably not. So keep that in mind the next time you consider checking our online bank accounts while standing in line at your neighborhood coffee shop.
Hackers love a good unsecured WiFi network. And they are looking for unsuspecting victims to slip up in the most simple ways. Even worse, use what is called a WiFi “pineapple” to trick those using the WiFi into connecting to their malicious network. They do this by kicking all users off the network. Then they broadcast the same Service Set Identifier (SSID). So when you go back to connect to the WiFi, you are unknowingly connecting to a hacker’s network and virtually handing over all of your data.
Your best bet is to avoid public WiFi connections at all costs. The money in your bank will thank you for keeping it safe.
Keep your finances and personal data secure with BITS. Contact us today to find out how we can keep your network safe without going over budget.
6. Always Type In Your Banks URL, Not Through Email Links
Do you receive email from your bank? Have you ever noticed anything weird about those emails?
If so, there’s a really good chance that you’ve received emails from someone impersonating your bank. You can usually tell something is off when you notice typos, overly pixelated logos, or a sender’s email address that is slightly different from normal. For instance, if you use Chase Bank, you might get an email from email@example.com. A lot of people may not notice that extra a, and that’s exactly what the hackers are counting on.
If you were to click a link from a suspicious email pretending to be your bank and then input your login information, a hacker now has your login and password to your actual bank profile.
Keep Your Data & Finances Safe With Brooks IT Services
Ready to have confidence in your IT security?
Whether you’re banking, working, or just streaming movies, your IT security matters. Without a strong defense system in place, it’s a matter of when not if a hacker takes you for everything.
Brooks IT Services works with small Houston business owners like you to keep networks secure and the entire staff aware of the newest threats. Don’t toss and turn another night wondering if a hacker has their eyes on you.