Protecting Your Finances: Essential Tips for Online Safety with 1st Advantage Bank
In today’s digital age, where online banking, bill payments, and shopping have become the norm, it’s crucial to ensure the safety of your finances year-round. 1st Advantage Bank is here to provide you with valuable insights on protecting your finances. Here are some top ways to ensure your financial security:
Learn to Recognize Scams
Scams can target anyone, and the key to safeguarding your finances is being able to identify them. Common online scams often include emails, text messages, or pop-ups. Phishing attempts may claim to be from reputable sources like your bank or courier services. Pay close attention to these messages – many contain misspellings, and improper grammar, and may not address you by name. They often create a sense of urgency, insisting on immediate action or a click-through link to avoid dire consequences. Never click on these links or provide personal and financial information. Remember, your bank would never ask for sensitive information in this manner.
Use Trusted Websites
Scammers have become adept at creating fake websites that appear genuine. They often masquerade as online shopping or donation platforms. To protect yourself, research the credibility of the site or charity they claim to represent. Check the website’s URL for anything suspicious. Legitimate websites should have “https://” and a padlock symbol in the address bar. If the site lacks these security indicators, exercise caution. Some scams may seem secure until you reach the checkout page, so always scrutinize the entire site to avoid potential fraud.
Use Your Own Devices
When conducting online financial transactions, such as making purchases or paying bills, it’s best to use your own devices. You have control over who uses your devices and can ensure your information isn’t accessible to unauthorized individuals. Avoid conducting financial transactions on public or shared computers, as they may have software that can capture and store your data. Keeping your finances private on your own devices is crucial, and you should only grant access to trusted individuals.
Use a Credit Card or Gift Card
Online shopping is convenient, but it comes with risks, even when dealing with reputable retailers. When you enter your financial information during a purchase, that data can be stored by the retailer. In the event of a data breach, your financial security may be compromised. To mitigate this risk, avoid using a debit card for online purchases. In case of a breach, the funds in your debit card account could be depleted, causing significant financial stress. Instead, opt for a credit card, where stolen funds can be easier to recover. Alternatively, you can use a gift card, keeping your primary account safe from unauthorized access.
In today’s digital era, our financial lives are also predominantly digital. Knowing how to keep your finances safe online is an essential practice that should be part of your routine year-round. It’s always better to be safe than sorry.
1st Advantage Bank is committed to educating its customers about cybersecurity best practices. We host workshops on the subject to help you stay informed. To learn more about scam prevention and protect your finances, watch this informative presentation by Sergeant Melissa Doss of the St. Peters Police Department. And remember, your best defense is to stay calm. Member FDIC
Watch Our Latest Fraud Prevention Workshop: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hne2wDlSgwI&t=63s