This week the news has been filled with yet another Cyber security attack, this time on Delta. Several hundreds of thousands of customers may have been exposed who made purchases between September 26th and October 12th of 2017. The breach exposed the buyers name, address, payment card number, CVV number and expiration date if the information was entered by a customer making a purchase manually. So the good news is if your profile already contained your payment information, you were not impacted.
In 2015, global credit, debit and prepaid card fraud amounted to $21.84 billion in losses, according to the Nilson Report. By 2020, the same report estimates that card fraud worldwide will reach $31.67 billion. With numbers like this I had to stop and think how this might affect me, as I buy a lot of flights on Delta. For some reason news about Target, Macy’s, and other retail stores never concerned me. I guess I always feel immune to being caught up in this type of security breach. I think this false sense of security may someday come back and bite me, so maybe there are some things I should be doing.
I don’t know about you, but I am terrible at looking through my monthly credit card statements. If I saw some large number due that stood out, then I might go through the statement. This is probably my biggest mistake. It doesn’t need to be something as big as a cyber security attack to have errors on your credit card. A store might double charge you (this has happened to me), a waiter may adjust the tip left (this has happened to me), a return may not have been credited (this has happened to me), and so many other variances. It can’t take that long to review a month’s worth of purchases on a few credit cards. I have to start making this a habit.
Another area I am terrible at, is passwords. I am a creature of habit and again, think that no one would be interested in hacking my account or steal from me. They say you should have different passwords for each of your accounts and that these should be changed regularly. 100% of my credit cards are managed online. I haven’t written a check to pay a bill in years…with the exception of the IRS. This week’s news had me going through every single account and updating my password. It took about 20 minutes, but I feel better.
I googled things I can do to protect myself. I liked these 8 simple suggestions;
1. Shred your documents.
2. Strengthen your passwords.
3. Check your credit reports.
4. Guard your Social Security number.
5. Be smart about social media.
6. Secure your phone.
7. Know the signs of phishing.
8. Monitor your financial statements.
What are you doing to protect yourself? Leave comments above…