The multitude of high-profile data breaches over the past several years has caused concerns about cybersecurity for both advisors and their clients. According to WealthManagement.com, high-net-worth families are particularly at risk for individualized cybercrime because they tend to be a more visible target.
Delegate Advisors President Andy Hart recently spoke to WealthManagement.com and offered several actionable ways families and their advisors can greatly reduce the risk of becoming a victim.
“I used to think email was a secure way to communicate with our clients, but not anymore, especially after witnessing firsthand how sophisticated the criminals have become,” says Hart. “Thankfully, each of the attempts to defraud our clients have been prevented. By being more than a bit paranoid about money movement, we hope to defeat all future attempts as well.”
Hart shared the following tips to help protect wealthy families from cybersecurity threats:
- Place a permanent freeze on your credit: This ensures that your personal credit cannot be accessed by anyone who doesn’t have the personal PIN number, which is assigned when you freeze your credit.
- Use two-factor authentication for online accounts: Less than 1 percent of people use two-factor verification even though it is one of the best ways to protect yourself from hackers.
- Use a separate computer or device to log into all financial accounts:This prevents hackers from gathering login IDs and passwords through malware delivered by email or online advertising.
- Minimize your online footprint:Limiting who can see social media posts can prevent hackers from gathering useful information.
- Use a secure Wi-Fi network to access email or financial accounts:If the network is unsecure, only use email with an encrypted link.
- Establish low balance alerts:This ensures you are aware of potentially suspicious activity on credit and debit cards.
- Verify any wiring instructions received by email with a phone call:Hackers are known to secure access to an email account and wait for an opportunity to change wiring instructions.
To learn more, see the full WealthManagement.com article here. It includes a slideshow with more details on each of these tips.