Always take measures to protect your online life. Here are a few ways to prevent, or at least minimize your risk of, being exposed while online: Following these steps will help mitigate your risk of fraud and will help protect your online data.
If you have used the same passwords on several accounts for a while, it might be time for new ones. Cyber Security experts advise people to use complex passwords featuring numbers, symbols and letters. Passwords are like toothbrushes: you should never share them, and they should be changed often!
Update the security software on all your devices., like cell phones and tablets. Be sure to set automatic updates to your operating system and applications and install update fixes and patches to protect yourself.
Be careful when shopping online. Many sites, such as those from departments stores, encourage you to save your personal and financial information after making a purchase. Do not it! Even sites that are secure can be hacked.
If someone offers you money in exchange for your personal or financial information, it is most likely a scam. Cybercriminals pretend to be a legitimate source to get personal information. They might use emails or text messages to try and trick you into clicking on a link or opening an attachment. Examples include: “We’ve noticed some suspicious activity on your account” or “There’s a problem with your payment information, please click here to make this month’s payment.” They may also offer you free things or say you’re eligible to register for a government refund. If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. If you are unsure whether a text or email is legitimate, contact the company. Go to the company’s website and use the contact information found there. Financial institutions will never ask for your personal information, and it should never be shared with anyone.
If you lose your debit/credit card, ID, phone with the mobile banking app, or if you compromise your personal/financial information online or over the phone, inform your financial institution as soon as possible. They will help you take steps to protect your accounts.
If you have been a victim of online banking fraud or a scam, contact IC3.gov and file a complaint.