Admittedly, cybersecurity can be a dull topic; unfortunately, it is essential for protecting yourself and the assets you have worked hard to accumulate in today’s world. Let’s start by testing your fraudster detective skills. Sonic Wall, a company that produces and distributes products designed for network security, has put out an IQ quiz to help access how vulnerable you may be to phishing schemes. It is only seven questions and quickly illustrates just how sneaky fraudsters can be. I took the test and identified 6 out of the seven correctly. Take the quiz and try your skill at identifying fraudsters.
When thinking about cybersecurity, it makes sense to look at investor account protection as well what additional steps you can take to further protect yourself.
The custodian our clients use provide 100% coverage of any losses as long as certain criteria were met in an investment account due to unauthorized activity. It features encryption and risk-based security technology. These controls, combined with automated alerts, an identity verification process, and rigorous monitoring, help defend against unauthorized account access. Employees are trained in privacy and security. However you access your account information, you will be verified before any sensitive data is discussed. You will also receive an alert when money is moved or your personal information is changed. Other custodians, banks and institutions are likely to have similar controls.
While the custodian does their part, security has to be a partnership. You need to take part in cybersecurity too. Here are a few additional steps to do your part to help ensure that your information and accounts are safe.
Some brokers and custodians allow you the ability to set up your security alerts. You can enable notifications, so you will immediately know when activity occurs in your accounts. These help, as if something happens on your account you did not authorize, you will know it very quickly.
Enroll in Advanced Authentication:
Two-Factor Authentication seems like all the rage over the last year, with more and more places offering it. After enrolling, you’ll receive a one-time security code to use with your password each time you sign in for more robust account protection. You can usually sign up for this, as well as the security alerts, in a security section when you are logged into your account.
Name a Trusted Contact:
Naming a Trusted Contact on your account is optional. One of the advantages of a Trusted Contact is that they can discuss activities or other possible red flags that might indicate you are being financially exploited. Your Trusted Contact is not like your Durable Power of Attorney and has no authority to transact business for your account. The Trusted Contact authorization does not allow them to view account information, execute transactions, or inquire about account activity. If you have not already added a trusted contact to your account with us, it is not a bad idea to consider doing so. Current clients can reach out to our office for the paperwork to complete this authorization.
Every layer of protection can help keep your assets secure. Wherever you have investments, consider the protocols they have in place for cybersecurity and make sure you are doing your part to complete the cybersecurity partnership.
Disclosure: The custodian our clients use provide 100% coverage of any losses in an investment account due to unauthorized activity.