Freedom Debt Relief Recommends Ways Consumers Can Avoid Becoming Cybercrime Victims
As we spend more time online conducting personal and business transactions, the risk of becoming a cybercrime victim also increases. When hackers gain access to your personal and financial information, they can use the information to commit credit card fraud and identity theft, two crimes that are a headache to deal with. Freedom Debt Relief recommends five ways you can avoid becoming a victim of a cybercrime.
Make sure you have a strong password.
If you’re using any of the world’s most common passwords like – 123456, qwerty, or password – it’s time to change your password to something more secure. There’s a reason more websites are requiring more complicated passwords: they’re more difficult to hack. The strongest password will include a mix of upper and lowercase letters, at least one number, and one non-alphanumeric character.
Use two-factor authentication if you can.
More websites are making login more secure with two-factor authentication. After you enter your password, you’ll be sent a text message or email with a code to enter. The extra layer of security ensures that you’re the one accessing your account. You’ll want to use two-factor authentication especially for your financial accounts. Make sure you have the correct email address and phone number on your financial websites so the code reaches you, advises Freedom Debt Relief.
Don’t use public wi-fi for shopping.
The trouble with public wi-fi is that any information you send can be intercepted by anyone else who’s using the same wi-fi, warns Freedom Debt Relief. That means a hacker could get access to your username, password, credit card number, or any other personal or financial information you send. Save your online purchases and business transactions for a time that you’re on a secured network, like the one in your home.
Be skeptical of emails.
One of the ways cybercriminals get your personal information is by posing as legitimate businesses – often via email. Beware of any emails that warn you about fraud or suspicious activity on your any of your financial accounts. If the email asks you to click to login to check your account, there’s a good chance the link leads to a phishing website – one designed to capture your personal information. The website may even look like the real thing. If you suspect your account may have been compromised, login to your account directly rather using the link in the mail.
Don’t save your credit card information online.
Saving your credit card information on to websites where you shop frequently might save you the time and effort having to enter the numbers each time you shop. It also puts you at risk of a cybercrime, warns Freedom Debt Relief. If the website suffers a data breach, the hacker could gain access to your credit card information. While most major credit card issuers offer zero fraud liability – which keeps you from having to pay for unauthorized credit card charges – you still have to make sure you catch and report the fraud.
Cybercrime incidents will likely increase as consumers use the internet for more transactions. Freedom Debt Relief recommends taking all the necessary precautions to safeguard your information and reduce the risk that you can become a cybercrime victim.