Security Checks: Tips for Securing Your Online Transactions

Vertex Planning Partners / Resources / February 6, 2020

As technology continues to evolve, so too have the skills of cyber-criminals, who have honed their abilities to break through firewalls, stealing valuable personal data and funds.

What steps might you consider to help secure your valuable personal and financial data when banking online? Consider the following tips as important baseline checks.

Connect with caution. Be careful how and where you use any online banking system.

Protect your passwords. Choose and use your passwords carefully.

Regularly monitor accounts. Check account activity and online statements often instead of waiting for your monthly statement. If you notice a “red flag,” contact your bank immediately. When a customer reports an unauthorized transaction within 60 days of the occurrence, the financial institution will typically cover the loss and take measures to protect the account.1

Protect your equipment. Be sure your computers and mobile devices are equipped with up-to-date antivirus and malware protection.

Use social media prudently. Social media sites, such as Facebook and Twitter, are used by millions of people worldwide, but be sure to exercise caution when sharing personal information on these sites. Details such as your birth date, home address, or the names of schools you attended are frequently used by financial institutions to validate your identity and are therefore potentially useful to cyber-criminals. Always review the privacy policies for any social network you join to help avoid unintended disclosure of information.

Shop on secured sites. If you shop online, be sure to use only websites and merchants that you trust and that protect your account information with industry-standard security protocols. Look for secure transaction signs, such as a lock symbol in the lower right-hand corner of your browser or “https” in the address bar.

Understand your rights. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation’s (FDIC) “Regulation E” outlines protections that help consumers avoid losses from fraud pertaining to electronic fund transfers. You can obtain background on the rules from your financial institution or from the FDIC’s website (

With a healthy dose of caution and some old-fashioned common sense, you can safely use the Internet as a time-saving, convenient resource.



1Source: Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation.

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