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Online Banking; Protect Yourself From Fraud

Today’s digital society is continuously evolving, and new ways of technological fraud are being created every day in order to scam consumers out of their hard earned cash. From fake emails asking for your account details to bogus credit card offers, fraud is everywhere, whether it’s on the high street or online.

Over the last few years, online banking has allowed customers to access their accounts from anywhere in the world, making it fast and simple to complete transactions. However if the internet connection you’re using isn’t secure, your financial details will be open to attack from fraudsters looking to cypher cash.

These criminals are able to track your digital footprint, and will empty your accounts as well as steal your identity when given the chance. Banking institutions spend millions of pounds every year on high tech security systems, protecting your money and preventing your identification being used by another person. But even with the many resources the banks have at their disposal, fraud still affects millions of people a year.

In order to protect yourself when banking online, there are a number of ways you can identify a potential fraud threat.

Social Engineering

This type of fraud is on the rise, and many people don’t know that they’re under attack until it’s too late. Fraudsters will trick and manipulate people into giving them their account and banking details via social networking and instant messaging.

You can protect yourself against this by not disclosing your financial information to anyone online, over the phone or through the post. If you need to contact the bank over your finances, call them directly or visit a local branch. If you need a card reader in order to access your online account, never accept a ‘sync’, as this could be a fraudster attempting to copy your information from a remote location.

Phishing

Fraudsters using the phishing method will look to get your financial information from you by sending scam emails or other kinds of messages that will link you to fraudulent websites. These websites can look identical to your online banking site, but they are actually very detailed copies. By entering your details into a phishing site you are basically giving the fraudsters your login information. Once they have this information, they can access your online account and send all of your money to another account.

You can protect yourself from disclosing financial details by deleting these scam emails and never opening attachments. Attachments sent with these emails will be able to scan your computer and copy any information you’ve typed in online.

Trojans

A Trojan is a malicious piece of software that makes its way onto any internet enabled device. They can gain access to your computer by being hidden in emails, links, and other internet based domains where you’re asked to open a file. Trojans are capable of many things, such as recording passwords you type, and it can copy any details you input into a website by taking a screen-shot. The fraudster will then be able to access this information and make their way into your accounts. The best way to prevent your PC or Mac from getting a Trojan is by installing anti-virus software and internet security, which is widely available online and in stores.

This guest post was contributed by British writer Francesca on behalf of IVA Expert. To find out more about debt management and IVAs, visit their website.


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