6 Important Steps to Stop Financial Fraud
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Taking action after financial fraud occurs is one step too late. What if you could prevent it from happening in the first place?
Of course, the risk of financial fraud will always exist, but there are ways you can prevent it from occurring. Here are six ways to stop financial fraud from occurring to you.
1. Initiate Contact
Many hackers resort to phishing or sending you what looks like an official email or phone call when it’s hackers. Before providing any personal information (most banks won’t ask you to provide account numbers or Social Security numbers), make sure the source is legit.
The best way to ensure it’s legit is to make the call yourself. You know the phone numbers and email addresses of your bank. Contact them to see if they contacted you or if you were subject to phishing.
If you just give out your information, you could be giving it to hackers. So it pays to take that extra step.
2. Make your Passwords Hard to Guess
When you create passwords online, they usually tell you if it’s weak, medium, or strong. So always create strong passwords, this way, they are harder for hackers to guess. The key to a strong password is its length. So the longer you make it, the harder it is to guess.
When creating a password, include capital and lowercase letters, numbers, and symbols. The key is to make it hard for hackers to crack, which, once its length passes a certain point, it’s impossible.
3. Use Two Factor Authentication
It might feel annoying or like an extra step, but the extra step involved in two-factor authentication can mean the difference between getting hacked and avoiding it. Some financial institutions make signing up for two-factor authentication optional but always opt-in to keep your information safe.
Think of it as another alert that someone is trying to hack your information. For example, if you got a two-factor authentication code and didn’t initiate it, you know there’s a problem.
4. Mix up your Passwords
Don’t use the same password for multiple accounts. If hackers guess one password, they’ll also have access to your other accounts. Instead, try creating variations or separate passwords for each account and keep track of them somewhere safe where no one else can access them.
5. Avoid Public wi-fi
Using public wi-fi for non-personal business is fine, but avoid conducting bank or financial transactions on it. Also, if you use public wi-fi, ensure it’s the actual facility’s wi-fi and not the wi-fi a hacker created to like the company’s service.
6. Never Fall for Scams that Ask for Prepaid or Gift Cards
Anyone asking you to pay via gift or prepaid cards is a scam. There’s no getting around it; real companies never ask for this type of payment. The same is true of companies that ask for payment upfront without any promise of service – it’s another scam.
Preventing financial fraud is the best way to keep your finances safe. If something happens, there are ways to fix it, but it takes a lot of stress and hard work. So instead, take steps to prevent it from happening in the first place as much as possible.