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How to Keep Your Financial Data Secure

Secure your financesYour financial security is one of the keys to a happy life and a good future for those that you love. You, of course, keep your money mostly in a bank in order to keep it safe from thieves. Yet we live in a different world where that isn’t always enough anymore. There are cybercriminals who would like to steal your hard-earned money online or steal your identity and sell it to the highest bidder.

You cannot let this happen, so you should review these tips to make sure your data is as secure as it can be.

Protect Your Email

Your email account is probably the most important account you have to protect because it is likely what you used to create any other financial accounts you use online, and should it fall into the wrong hands, it could potentially be used to get into any accounts you have that contain personal or financial information. And without your email, it will be much harder to retrieve those accounts.

What you need to do is take every single security measure and option possible and maximize the protection on your email, even if it sounds like an inconvenience for you. Know that the inconvenience of identity theft is much, much greater. Make sure that you are using the best possible password and security questions (nothing that anyone can guess).

As a stronger measure, you might even wish to have a separate email account where you can take care of all of your various business and financial accounts and transactions. This way you don’t have to worry about a slip in security with one of your more casual accounts, and you can do easier damage control should something happen. Creating a new email is free and definitely worth the five minutes of effort.

Follow Common Internet Security Guidelines

The basics of internet security are the basics for a reason. There are all sorts of people trying to trick you out of your financial information online, and this doesn’t look like it is going to change anytime soon. Your passwords, as mentioned, are important and thus need care and attention to make sure that they are the strongest available. In addition, you need to have an internet security program, and you need to make sure it is updated along with your operating system.

You should also take great care about which websites you use when you are making purchases or other financial transactions online. Major players such as Amazon, PayPal or any of the major banks are probably okay, but some websites don’t even have basic protection. You shouldn’t trust such websites with your data, and the risk isn’t worth a discount of a few dollars or whatever else is offered to you. If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.

Use a VPN in Public

All of the best passwords and internet security measures won’t help you much if everything you send over the internet were printed and distributed to the world. Yet this is essentially what happens when you use a public network without any protection for your computer. Your computer, when using the public network, effectively broadcasts the data over the network, and anyone with the right receiver setup (they aren’t complex or expensive) can intercept whatever you send without you knowing. Financial data gets no special treatment in this scenario, and thus it is vital to protect yourself.

The best way to do that is to use a Virtual Private Network (VPN), which will connect your computer to an offsite secure server that masks your IP address. This connection is encrypted and protected so that you will effectively have a tunnel that your data passes through (instead of an open broadcast). This means that you can safely make financial transactions while you are using any network because the only information a hacker will be able to figure out is that you are using a VPN, and even that isn’t guaranteed for the hacker.

There are quite a few VPNs that will secure your finances, but be sure to pick out a well-reviewed one. There are some services that are sufficient but won’t give you service that you might require, so you are going to have to watch out.

Avoid the Cloud

While the cloud is for the most part a safe solution to storing personal data, sometimes data is just too important to arbitrarily give to a server you don’t have complete control over. The likelihood is that your financial data isn’t too large and thus can be stored easily on your personal computer. If you want to create a backup, which is a great idea, you can use a protected flash drive and put it in a safe. Should anything happen to your computer, you can load it onto your new system and then put it back in the safe. There are few safer methods than that.

Make a Weekly Review

While you should have a close eye on your finances as it is, there should be a special time set aside each week where you can properly take a look at the data that you are sending out and see if there are any abnormalities and react if necessary. While there are great alert systems that banks provide and you should be using them, there is nothing like a human pair of eyes to notice the things that a computer wouldn’t understand. It doesn’t need to be long, just take fifteen minutes or so each week to make sure that all the numbers add up. You can even do it while paying your bills.

Thank you for reading, and I hope that you have learned something new about the internet security habits and guidelines you should use so identity theft won’t happen to you.

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admin
Date:
December 17, 2015 um 7:31 pm
Category:
Miscellaneous Finance,Money
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