As more and more people access financial information over the web, the likelihood their information will be hacked also increases.
Media stories of client accounts being compromised is no longer news. There are steps that can be taken to minimize the risk.
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The first step is to ask institutions asking for private information if the information is necessary and if so, how they plan to protect information like a social security number.
Sometimes it doesn’t even take asking a question. The recent discovery that medical services providers, schools, and charities had been supplying social security numbers in their tax filings is a case in point.
Those filings are open to the public.
You can also advise your clients to only conduct financial transactions on a secure website. This includes sending sensitive financial information to their advisors through email—an inadvisable activity.
Using different passwords for different accounts and making those passwords challenging for hackers to break will also help. It also minimizes your client’s vulnerability by limiting a hacking to a single institution.
Using the same password across various accounts does not offer the same protection.
You can find other tips for conducting secure transactions here
. Some may surprise even you!