October is Cyber Security Awareness Month – Here Are Some Tips

What is Cyber Security Awareness?

Dear Reader,

October is National Cyber Security Awareness Month, so this is a great time to learn more about how you can protect yourself from cyber crimes. Cyber Security Awareness means:

  • understanding what the threats are to the security of your information online
  • how to combat those threats in order to protect your sensitive information in cyberspace.

Tips to Protect Yourself From Online Fraud

  • Use strong passwords. Never use a password that can be easily guessed, such as the name of a child or pet, your place of birth, or your mother's maiden name. A strong password will have a minimum of eight characters and contain a mix of letters, numbers and special characters.
  • Make sure the website you are using is secure. Double check to make sure the company you are doing business with is using a secure website before entering any personal information online. Look to see that the browser URL begins with "https" rather than "http." The "s" indicates the site is secure.
  • Shop online using a credit card with fraud protection. If online hackers do get your information, you are less likely to suffer personal loss as a result of any fraudulent charges.
  • Don't conduct personal business online while connected via a public Wi-Fi network. Make sure you are using a secure internet connection before engaging in online banking or entering sensitive financial information online.
  • Be aware of the potential for shoulder surfers. Someone looking over your shoulder at a coffee shop or standing behind you in line can easily capture the information they need to commit cyber fraud against you.

Even if you follow every precaution, there's no guarantee you'll never be a victim of cyber fraud. However, being aware of cyber security, frequently checking your credit reports, and carefully monitoring activity on bank and credit card accounts can increase your chances of catching any attempt at cyber fraud quickly and significantly reduce its impact.

Thanks for asking,
The Ask Experian Team