In current times, protecting yourself from financial fraud is a necessity. You can never know for sure when you can fall victim to identity theft or unfair lending practices. The risks are everywhere: from shopping online from a compromised device to taking a loan through the wrong lenders. See below a list of actions experts recommend you take to protect yourself against financial fraud and scams.
- Regularly check your bank accounts. You must know every single transaction and the exact amount of money on all your accounts. If it's hard to track all the information, consider keeping separate tabs or an expense tracker that you update manually when you make a change.
- Only access your bank account through safe devices and Internet connections. Avoid doing online transactions through public WiFi or shared devices.
- Use text alerts and set up additional confirmation methods for all your transactions. A second-step verification will secure the use of your funds and help you quickly identify any fraudulent actions. Additional notification settings are a commonly used practice that adds extra security to your account.
- Double-check financial communication channels. When you receive an email from a bank asking you to confirm or update your information, make a call and double-check if it's really them asking for the details. Never click on links that look suspicious.
- Check your credit report. Experts recommend checking your credit report to make sure the information held by the three major credit bureaus is accurate. The service is free to use from the official website. Beware of fraudulent companies that offer similar data information against a hefty charge.
Above all, keeping your devices protected, enabling extra verification measures, and controlling who has access to your information should be enough to protect you from fraud. Reduce your risk by regularly changing your passwords and keeping a backup information file to track your expenses.