Phishing: No Option for Catch and Release
We hear a lot this time of year about phishing scams. The Nigerian prince may be played out, but there are still thousands of ways that you can be tricked into handing out your sensitive financial information.
It is the season of giving right? So when you get that email asking you to make a charitable donation to some fund or another, you’re all in. And they make it so simple! All you have to do is click here, fill out a form with your bank account and routing numbers, oh, and maybe your PIN and social security number as well.
See? Easy! They’ll even send you a receipt and thank you email.
Now you can feel good about yourself all throughout the holidays! …Until you catch a glimpse of your next credit card or bank account statement that is. As it turns out, that really great organization you just donated to wasn’t a charity at all, it was a phishing scam.
So how do you avoid something like this from happening to you?
- It’s simple. Submit your personal information to accredited websites only. The URL will begin with HTTPS://. The “S” indicates that the server is secure. Some browsers will also include a lock symbol in the address bar.
- NEVER send out information about your finances in an email, or as an attachment. You never really know who is on the other side of the computer screen or what they plan on doing with that information.
- Do not open links unless from a trusted source.
- Do not respond to an email (or text message) from your bank. Instead call the company directly to confirm the legitimacy of the message.
- Use only a single credit card for making online purchases. That way you can easily keep track of the charges you make and monitor your statements for suspicious activity.
- If you do plan on donating this holiday season (always a good idea!) be sure to do so with a legitimate organization.
Contact Texan Insurance for more information on keeping your identity safe!