Your financial well-being is our highest priority, and in 2018 we aim to walk you through the necessary steps to protect your online data. We can imagine that although you would rather do almost anything else, you are as concerned as we are about keeping your data safe. To make it more manageable, we are sending you one new action item every month. If you missed the previous steps, we have listed them below with a link to the detail so that you can easily catch up.
Step Five: Never (ever) email sensitive information and always insist on encryption
Why? Phishers are experts at impersonating service providers such as mortgage brokers and tax-preparers who need to gather sensitive information. They know that when so many documents are exchanged, it can be very tempting to cut corners and attach an unencrypted document.
Whenever you must give a service provider sensitive information online, insist that they provide you with a secure encrypted method to transmit your information. If unavailable, consider sending your sensitive information by fax (they still exist!) or a reliable delivery service.
To learn more about phishing and how to protect yourself, follow this link to the Federal Trade Commission’s website.
Visit this link to view a Kahn Academy video about how encryption works.
List of Previous Steps:
Step One: Place a freeze on your credit history at the top three credit agencies.
Step Two: Update the operating software on your computers, tablets and smartphones, and continue to update as new patches become available.
Step Three: File your tax returns as early as possible.
Step Four: Use unique passwords on every site (and try a password manager)