Cybersecurity and Equitable: Keeping Client Data Safe!
The Internet has become a dominant force in all of our lives, as people work, play and shop from their devices with ease and comfort. However, as the Internet makes it easier to live our lives, it’s also made it easier than ever for bad actors to prey on the unsuspecting.
The FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center reported that in 2020, US cybercrime victims lost a total of $4.2 billion, $700 million more than the reported losses in 2019. Business Email Compromise (or BEC) scams have been especially common in the past few years. In a BEC scam, hackers impersonate official email addresses or social media channels and request fraudulent wire transfers.
Closing on a house is an especially vulnerable time, with the large amounts of funds and sensitive information involved. Bad actors can find many different ways to compromise privacy and steal data.
Taking steps to protect your cybersecurity is simple, and just requires some vigilance. Here are our top tips on keeping data safe!
- Change passwords often. And make sure they’re unique! A random mix of uppercase, lowercase and numeric characters are the strongest passwords to use.
- Use an encrypted password manager. Writing your passwords on paper or in an encrypted file can leave them extremely vulnerable to theft. An encrypted password manager ensures that only you have access to your login information.
- Watch who’s asking for information. NEVER give over sensitive information like passwords, bank account information or social security numbers unless you can verify the person requesting this information is who they claim to be.
- Be wary of suspicious links. Phishing links can be easily sent by text or email, shared on social media or even posted to official channels. If a link looks suspicious, report it immediately and DO NOT OPEN.
At Equitable, cybersafety is our number one priority, which is why we continue to find new ways to make the closing process more secure and will never request sensitive information to be sent to us by unsecured means. We’ve added an extra layer of sign-in security with two-factor authorization, and maintain rigorous security certifications, keeping all data safe and private.