The holidays are here, and you have loved ones to shop for. Completing your holiday shopping online is convenient, but unfortunately it can leave you open to fraud. With a few easy preventative steps, you can safeguard your financial information and finances whether you’re shopping online, in-store or on your phone.
Keep Your Information Up To Date
In case of suspicious activity we want to be able to contact you quickly to resolve the issue. Making sure that your phone number and email address are correct in our systems is key for quick resolution.
Use Strong Passwords
A strong password means a strong defense against hackers. Every year the most common (and therefore the worst) passwords in use are “123456” and “password.” Don’t use those passwords! Passwords with simple patterns, such as “1234” or “qwerty,” or with obvious substitutions, such as “H0u$e,” are easy to guess.
For example, a six-letter, lowercase password could take five minutes to break; one with nine letters could take two months. A six-character password that alternates numbers and symbols could take less than nine days to break, but one with nine characters could take a cybercriminal nearly 20,000 years to figure out.
When creating a strong password
- Try to make sure it’s at least eight to 10 characters.
- Complexity also helps. For example: the sentence “I love the panthers!” becomes “IL()v3Th3P@nth3r$!”
- Avoid using personal information (such as your Social Security number, phone number, birthday, or pet or family member names).
Allow Alerts & Notifications for your Account
You can set up alerts & notifications for your Abbeville First Bank accounts to come to you via email or through push notifications on the mobile app! This way you’re alerted the instant something happens. For more information on how to set these up visit our page about Protecting Your Money This Holiday Season with our Account Security Features
Protect your Devices
Keeping your phone, tablet and computer up to date with the latest browsers and operating systems helps protect against vulnerabilities that hackers can exploit. We know it can be annoying to update things, but those phone operating system updates almost always contain new fixes for vulnerabilities.
Look For Red Flags that Signal a Scam
If you provide your information or money to a scammer, there is often little we can do to get your money back. However we’ve already covered several ways to watch for scams and how to Keep Your Money Safe while Shopping this Holiday Season in this article!
Know Your Fraud Resources
During the holidays, you may be shopping in ways that are different from your normal pattern, so it makes it tricky to spot fraud. We have several things in place that can help keep you protected. Set up account activity alerts or restrict different types of purchases to help you keep a close eye on your account. As always, if something looks suspicious, report it by calling us at (864) 366-2158 or contacting us!