Cybersecurity & Online Banking Safety during a Crisis
March 18, 2020
The Covid-19 pandemic has complicated our daily lives and opened a space for con artists to take advantage of citizens during a time of great vulnerability. The probability of fraudulent attempts to gain access to your bank accounts, or criminals peddling fake products, drastically increases during stressful situations such as this.
The Texas Department of Banking & Texas Bankers Association collaborated on a set of informational graphics to give consumers a list of top tips to increase online awareness and safety.
View the full PDF versions of these infographics HERE to print and share.
|8 TIPS FOR BANKING ONLINE SAFELY|
| 1. Monitor Your Accounts Regularly
Make sure that all transactions posted are ones you have authorized. Report any suspected fraudulent or suspicious activity to your bank immediately.
| 2. Look Out for Strange Emails
Don’t respond to emails that claim to be from your bank (or any other company) requesting your account details or passwords. Banks WILL NOT reach out to you through email to ask for your account details.
| 3. Avoid Clicking Links in Emails
It is usually much safer to log in to your bank website manually to ensure you are entering a secure site. Be sure you are accessing your bank’s official website.
| 4. Change Your Bank Passwords Regularly
Avoid using the same password across multiple sites and make sure you are choosing a strong password that is a mix of upper and lower case letters, numbers, and special characters. Avoid using any words or phrases that contain your name, initials, or your birthdate.
| 5. Enable Two-Factor Authentication
Many financial institutions have added a layer of security for account holders. Two-factor authentication requires you to enter an extra verification credential before you can access your account.
| 6. Disable Automatic Login
Do not allow your web browser to store private username and password information for your online banking websites.
| 7. When a Mobile App is available, ensure you only use your bank’s official Mobile App. And, make sure you download apps from reputable sources.
| 8. Not Sure If Something is Legitimate?
Do you have questions about your bank’s technology? Call them … they will be happy to help!
|8 TIPS TO BE MORE CYBERSECURE|
| 1. Email Fraud
If it seems too good to be true, it is probably fraud. Don’t believe that lottery awards staff or princes from a foreign country will contact you by email!
| 2. Fraudulent Payments
Be on guard against fraudulent checks, cashier’s checks, money orders, or electronic fund transfers sent with a request for you to wire part of the money.
| 3. Unsolicited Offers
Be wary of unsolicited offers that require you to “ACT FAST”
| 4. Stay Up-To-Date
Make sure your device is up-to-date with the latest security updates for your operating system.
| 5. Warnings and Errors
Do not trust websites with certificate warnings or errors.
| 6. Beware of Email Attachments
It’s never a good idea to click on an email attachment or free software from unknown sources. You could end up exposing your system to online fraud and theft.
| 7. Sharing Online
Watch how much you share online. The more you post about yourself on social networking sites, the easier it may be for someone to use that information to access your accounts, steal your identity, and more. Protect your personal information by maximizing your privacy settings.
| 8. Financial Scams
Be aware of disaster-related financial scams. Con artists take advantage of people after catastrophic events by claiming to be from legitimate charitable organizations when, in fact, they are attempting to steal money or valuable personal information.
|Additional Resources About Being Safe Online:
Texas Department of Banking — www.dob.texas.gov
Texas Bankers Association — www.texasbankers.com/BankingSafely
Better Business Bureau — www.bbb.org/council/for-businesses/cybersecurity
READ MORE: How to Help Your Business through Covid-19
In addition, many customers are calling to inquire about what they should do regarding savings accounts, CDs, and other investments in this unstable market. We highly suggest customers should contact their financial advisor directly to go over any questions or make adjustments to investment accounts.