The acceleration of cyber-fraud, often inflicted from afar at likely no risk to the perpetrator, is such a pervasive concern that one of our techie friends mentioned he had to have therapy to stop waking up at night worrying about whether his clients’ technical systems were as cyber-safe as humanly possible. His story is a reminder of the effectiveness of cyber-fraudster tactics and the resulting theft of personal confidential information and subsequently, money.
Despite this, there are things we can all do to avoid becoming a target. For instance, consider the following:
- Whenever possible, implement dual authentication on websites you visit.
- Adopt longer passwords with a funny phrase. These will be easy to remember, but hard to guess. For example: 2redappleseatenbyteacherspet
- Use different passwords for different websites.
- Avoid reusing former passwords.
- Do not click on links in emails or texts because doing so might permit access into your computer if sent by a fraudster; go to the service provider’s site independently instead.
- Be astute when reading and responding to emails. For instance, are they actually from the sender you assume wrote them?
- If you are not expecting a particular email that requests you to click on a link, call the sender to confirm the origin of the request.
- Avoid completing a wire transaction of funds using email. Confirm the transaction by phone with verbal verifications, using a phone number not provided across email.
As you may discern, we end-users are often the lynchpin to avoiding fraudster traps. Certainly, our own vigilance can make all the difference in preserving cyber-safety. And while there is no doubt that the safety tips we are suggesting you consider will take more time, that recognition brings to mind the time-tested Benjamin Franklin adage: “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.”
Please share any cyber-security tips that you have found helpful and feel free to contact us with your questions. We are available at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone 610.687.3515.