As the interconnected digital world expands, there is an abundance of information, data, and online transactions. The significance of cybersecurity is critical to safeguarding personal information, data, and online privacy. October is Cybersecurity Awareness Month, and serves as a critical reminder of the importance of safeguarding our online space to protect our personal information.
Here are five practices to help prevent and manage cyber risk:
- Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA): Using multi-factor authentication such as an authenticator app, one-time code to your phone, or using fingerprints and facial recognition, is an extra way to increase security on your apps and accounts. This extra step verifies your identity and helps prevent unauthorized access by hackers. Even if your password is compromised, multi factor authentication (MFA) can help stop hackers from successfully getting your information.
- Use Strong Passwords: Using strong passwords that are both long and unique helps protect and secure your information. The ideal strong password is a 16-character, unique, memorable, and seemingly random combination of letters, numbers, and symbols. The more intricate and distinctive it is to you, the tougher it becomes for potential hackers to guess your password.
- If your password is “password,” it’s time to switch it up. You may also want to consider avoiding the use of personal information in your passwords as that becomes another piece of information for potential hackers to use.
- Validate Requests for Personal Data: Phishing is a cyberattack technique where hackers send fraudulent links through text, email, or attachments to appear as trusted organizations or sites, to get your personal information, or to get into your devices. If you receive a message from a bank, remember that, no bank would ever request your account number, social security number, name, address, or password in a text message or email. If you receive a message or email with a link that you are unsure is legitimate, validate and call the organization to verify or report the fraudulent link.
- If you follow us on social media or have visited our website recently, you may have seen our message about a recent phishing attempt from a text claiming to be FMS Bank. Please know that we’ll never ask you to click a link in a text message. If you should receive one, please ignore the message, avoid clicking any links, and report it immediately.
- Update Device Software: Ensuring your device software is up to date is a simple and easy way to prioritize online safety. Software updates help fix or patch up software flaws that without the fix, could leave your device susceptible to a cyberattack or allow an individual to get into your device through the security defect. Think twice before hitting the “remind me later” on your next update! The sooner the update is installed, the sooner the update can protect you.
- Practice Safe Online Shopping: As online shopping has become more convenient and prominent, it is important to shop with secure and trusted websites. Trusted and secure websites not only deliver genuine products, but also help ensure your personal and financial information is protected. In a digital world where online security is critical, protecting your personal and financial information is important. By implementing these practices to help prevent and manage cyber risk, you take steps toward protecting your personal information.
In a digital world where online security is critical, protecting your personal and financial information is important. By implementing these practices to help prevent and manage cyber risk, you take steps toward protecting your personal information.