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Protect Yourself and Your Data

Spring is a busy time with many of us preparing tax returns and therefore logging on and off various financial websites for key documents.

This is prime time for criminals who want your valuable personal information.

Don’t let them fool you!

Phishing attacks can take a variety of forms. The intent is typically to get your valuable personal information so that hackers can use different techniques to defraud you.

Some hackers forge whole websites—making them look identical to legitimate websites—to convince clients to enter their login credentials or register for new accounts.

Others impersonate digital money transfer services to trick you into reversing transfers that never happened, which is when money is actually transferred from your account.

Attacks can be devious and difficult to spot. Be careful about sharing personal information with others over the phone, via text or email, or through a website.

Remember that AMG will never ask you to share personal information such as your social security number, account number, or login credentials over the phone or via email.

Be wary of anyone who does.

Pausing when something doesn’t seem quite right, practicing good password hygiene, and requiring two-step sign-ins likely will keep attackers at bay—during this tax season and in the future.

Reminder of Best Practices

  • If a message is written with urgent language, pause. Confirm its veracity via another means of communication.
  • Before you click on a link, even from a trusted provider, hover over it to confirm that it is correct.
  • Ideally, you should only click on a secure link, those starting with https: vs. http:.
  • Look out for slight misspellings in URLs, e.g., amgnationel.com vs. amgnational.com.
  • Watch out for URLs that end with .co instead of .com, e.g., amgnational.co vs. amgnational.com.
  • When in doubt, do not click on a link provided in an email. Do a separate search for the organization’s website or set a bookmark for a link that you know is correct.
  • Make sure that you create a unique, strong password for each site you visit, especially banking and financial sites.
  • If you have trouble remembering passwords, consider a passphrase using special characters or a password manager. Do not rely on sticky notes on your desk or unprotected documents on your computer.
  • Set up multi-factor authentication, which requires another form of ID to log in.
  • Regularly update your computer software to make sure that it has the latest security patches and updates, especially web browsers.

Additional Resources

 

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