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Internet security fraud tips

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Electronic Banking - Keeping it safe

With both web and telephone banking widely available, accessibility to your funds is even easier. However, it’s important to remember to stay smart and safe online, there are lots of tips made available by the Australian Government at Stay Smart Online.

Accessing the internet safely and securely is relevant to everyone. It is important to know the risks that exist online and how to protect yourself from online crime like identity theft, which is an ever-present threat.

There are four simple steps you can take to protect yourselves, your family and your business online. These can ensure you’re protected from cyber criminals, access the internet securely and remain safe online.

Ensure you access the internet securely and with confidence

Remember to:

  • Get a better, stronger password and change it at least twice a year.
  • Get security software, and update and patch it regularly.
  • Stop and think before you click on links or attachments from unknown sources - especially on your mobile device.
  • Information is valuable. Be careful about what personal information you give away about yourself and others online.
  • Your personal identity details such as Date of Birth and Address are private – don’t give them away to random callers.

Scam Emails

Scam emails are a popular way to gain access to your personal information. To try and reel people in, they can often use emotive language, request money, or just request a reply. These are called “Phishing” scams.

Do not respond to these kinds of requests. Never give out your PIN or personal information to anyone. Remember, your credit union, mutual bank or building society will never ask you for your password, PIN or personal banking details in an email, an online message or an unsolicited telephone call.

Do not send money to anyone you don’t know. You can also check if the request is legitimate – research the person, company and offer. Identity fraud is also a real threat, so safeguard your identity information online and offline with simple measures like ensuring your mailbox is locked. With online security, personal files like tax returns and scanned copies of identity documents and passports need to be kept safe. Setting a strong password on email and social media accounts is critical. 

Scam Telephone Calls

Unsolicited telephone calls made by scammers are used to gain access to your personal information. These callers can be very insistent and use intimidating tactics.

Using what’s called social engineering scammers will call pretending to be a legitimate business or service often a large brand name for the purposes of trying to obtain personal confidential banking details.

To gain attention and get a response they will use emotive language and often use local events or even disasters to convince people to give up their personal and private banking details.

Calls can be under the pretext of being a survey or even a security check , this is where the scammers will press for personal information they can use to identify themselves as you . This is why it’s very important not to respond to these kinds of requests.

Your Banking Details are Confidential

Never give out your card PIN, banking credentials, identity or personal information to anyone. This also includes people who want access to your device or computer under pretext of helping you.  

Remember, your credit union, mutual bank or building society will never ask you for your banking or personal identity details in an email, an online message or phone call you didn’t initiate.

Do not send money to anyone you don’t know. You can also check if the request is legitimate – research the person, company and check with family, friends and scamwatch.gov.au which has information about how these scams target you.

Identity fraud is a real threat – fraudsters will target you and others that may be more vulnerable, such as the elderly or those who may not easily understand the scam. Make sure everyone in your family is aware and hang up on scam callers even if they sound legitimate.

For more information, you can visit the Australian Government’s E-Security website at staysmartonline.gov.au.

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