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Protecting Your Personal Information

The 4 Cornerstones of Internet Security

The internet is a wonderful resource, but lurking beyond the wealth of information and entertainment are dangers that can have a real impact on our personal lives. Every time you browse online, use social media or read an email; cyber-criminals see an opportunity and it’s vital that you take SAFE measures to keep your information secure.

 

In the latest video of our CyberSafe Series, we look at 4 best practices to keep your personal information under lock and key.

 

 

Cornerstone 1 – Secure Passwords

 

Always use secure passwords and never re-use them. As a rule of thumb, a secure password is one that is updated every 12 weeks, is not a word and includes a complex mix of uppercase and lowercase letters, numbers and symbols. It’s good to make sure you have different passwords for different accounts too. If someone manages to guess your password, you can bet they’ll try using it on other sites too.

 

Increasingly, browsers, websites and devices are making it easy to remember complex passwords, or online banking details by offering ‘remember me’, ‘password manager’ or ‘Touch ID’ login features. Always exercise extreme caution if you choose to utilize these options, particularly if you use a public device, share your device with someone else or have not implemented these 3 tips to actively protect your device.

 

Cornerstone 2 -  Always Type Login Addresses Manually

 

Never follow an email link to a login page, it may be a phishing email trying to trick you to go to a spoofed login page where cyber-criminals can steal your details. Always type the login addresses manually or navigate to the website from a saved bookmark. To be extra vigilant, always check the spelling of a website’s URL to ensure it is correct, check that the URL starts with https:// or access sensitive sites such as your online banking portal via your anti-virus software’s safe environment.

 

Cornerstone 3 - Financial Information On Secure Networks

 

You’re forgiven for jumping on the mall's free WiFi, it saves you on costly phone plan data overages and means you can ensure you don’t miss a beat when it comes to staying up to date on the latest celebrity gossip. However, many free Wi-Fi spots or unsecured and with a few simple clicks the person sat next to you in Starbucks can be browsing through your files or recording your actions without you even knowing.  

 

Never do any financial site logins or transactions on a public, unsecured connection. If you absolutely have to, turn off WiFi and use your phone’s data instead, or look to access this information using a secure Virtual Private Network (VPN).

 

Cornerstone 4 – Enable Updates & Patches

 

Always install the latest updates to apps and your device. Updates remove vulnerabilities and keep your information and identities safe. To be extra safe, every once in a while you should uninstall unused apps on your device, head into the settings of your phone to delete an app’s data and clear your internet browser of third-party cookies and cached files.

 

We care about your online safety. If you have any concerns about cybersecurity or the safety of your account, review our Security FAQ's or contact us today by calling 1.866.923.4778.

 

WHERE TO GET MORE INFORMATION ON FRAUD PREVENTION:

 

Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre | 1.888.495.8501

Competition Bureau of Canada 1.800.348.5358

The Little Black Book of Scams

Government of Canada (Public Safety Canada) resources on Identity Theft