How To Minimize Online Account Hacking: It’s really time to take charge of your passwords and credentials.
Once again, the internet fraudsters are back at it. There is a new hacking technique called “credential stuffing” where attackers take millions of email addresses and corresponding passwords from hacked databases and try them on millions of online web sites to see if they work. If yours is on a list out there, it’s now even more likely to be at risk for an online compromise.
So, what can you do to minimize the likelihood of this happening? How can you improve online security habits? Here are a few suggestions FMFCU has collected to help you. But there’s a catch… you actually have to take action! If you just take a little time on a rainy day to set things up properly, you’ll feel more at ease with your security!
Get a password manager: Our favorite is LastPass. This does it all. Enter all passwords in the app (or online) to set it up. Then, all you have to remember is the one password for LastPass to log into your secure web sites. It also suggests strong passwords, securely fills in forms and credit card information when making purchases, and even stores private information like driver’s license, insurance policies, WiFi passwords, bank accounts, and more.
Use Passphrases: Collections of words strung together (unrelated if possible) are not only easier to remember, but very hard to crack.
Set Up Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA) When Available According to KrebsonSecurity, your account is more than 99.9% less likely to be compromised if using MFA. Over at twofactorauth.org, they have a great starter list of sites that support MFA broken down by industry. Side note: FMFCU employs MFA in Online and Mobile Banking.
Do Not Re-Use Passwords: Many of us are guilty of either using the same passwords over many of our favorite web sites or adding a number or letter at the end to make them slightly different. It’s far too easy for crooks to crack them with their high-tech logarithms.
Romance Scams Are On The Rise: Don’t be fooled into giving them your money. Here are some clues to help recognize them.
Lately, more consumers are getting caught in romance scams. In 2018 alone, consumers lost $143 million, more than any other consumer fraud type.* People are getting lured into talking to people with phony online profiles, and once a relationship is established, they pull on heartstrings asking for money for medical emergencies or another grave situation. And now, they’re not only using dating apps, but social media as well.
Here are a few tips to spot scammers:
- Never send money or gifts to someone you haven’t met in person.
- Talk to someone you trust about this new relationship. Sometimes, we can be blinded to things that don’t add up because it’s new. Pay attention if your friends or family are concerned.
- Take it slowly. Ask questions and look for inconsistent answers. Try a reverse-image search of the profile picture. If they’re associated with another name or with details that don’t match up, it’s a scam.
- More tips from the Federal Trade Commission (FTC)
*Federal Trade Commission – https://www.ftc.gov/news-events/blogs/data-spotlight/2019/02/romance-scams-rank-number-one-total-reported-losses
Visit the FMFCU Security Center for today’s latest online security news and tips to keep your computer up-to-date.