Staying safe online

March 4, 2022 • Lewis Goldsbury

Technology is moving at a breakneck pace and has changed the way many of us use the internet.

Things like online banking and shopping have made financial transactions even easier to manage, but in turn, has created more opportunities for cybercriminals to steal valuable information from us.

At Fair For You, we care about our customer’s safety, so read on for some helpful tips about staying safe online and protecting yourself and your money.

Use different passwords

Always pick a unique, strong password using a mixture of numbers, letters and special characters. This can make a cyber criminal’s job – hacking your account and getting hold of your information – much harder.

If remembering all of your different passwords gets tricky, a Password Manager Service, like Google’s Password Manager, can store them in a secure and encrypted vault. That way, you can rest easy knowing your passwords are always protected too!

Enable privacy settings

It’s important to be selective about the information we share online and who gets to see it. Gain control over your personal information by enabling privacy settings on your social media accounts. This can help reduce the chance of hackers stealing your information – such as your address, the name of your pets and where you went on holiday. All of which, can potentially be used to access your accounts if they fall into the wrong hands.

Read online reviews

Perhaps you’ve found a wish-list item for a bargain price on a website you haven’t seen or heard of before. Make sure you take some time to read any business or customer reviews to make sure the website or deal is genuine. A reputable review site, such as Trustpilot, is a good place to find reviews for independent sellers.

Steer clear of public hotspots

When you’re out and about, try and avoid logging into your bank account or email using public hotspots. When you connect to a public WI-FI, you have very little control over your security as you’re essentially connecting your private network to the rest of the world.

If you do need to use a public hotspot, make sure your device is secure and protected – more on that below – and don’t forget to conceal your screen too. No one should be looking over your shoulder when you’re entering private information into your phone or computer!

Keep antivirus up-to-date

Antivirus software can easily be overlooked. As you browse the web, antivirus protection works in the background, letting you know whether a site is safe to visit, or if a file is safe to open.

Think of it as your own online bodyguard. It’s there to help prevent unwanted people or viruses from corrupting your device and stealing your data!

Turn on banking alerts

It’s important to keep a close eye on your bank statements in case anything suspicious takes place. By checking them regularly, you’ll be able to spot any potentially fraudulent activity.

To make the process even smoother, try contacting your bank to see if you can sign up for security emails or text alerts. You’ll receive direct notifications about things like unusual activity or debit card purchases. Giving you peace of mind and the ability to act fast if something doesn’t seem right.

Make sure online banking sites are secure

Open Banking is slowly becoming a big part of the financial world with over 2.5 million UK businesses and consumers using it to manage their money and share their financial information with other authorised providers.

If you ever need to share your financial information with anyone online, it’s always a good idea to carefully read the small print before giving them access. You should also make sure that the site is registered with the Financial Conduct Authority.

To learn more about open banking – what it is and how we use it at Fair For You – head over to our blog where we answer all your open banking questions.

It pays to be careful with your information and money, and at Fair For You we want you to feel as comfortable as possible when using our services.

Fully authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority, our mission is to help UK families spread the upfront cost of home essentials like washers, cookers and beds. With affordable and flexible repayments plans, it’s quick and easy to apply – there are no deposits and no hidden fees. Plus, we have over 12,000 happy customers on Trustpilot who have rated us ‘Excellent’.

To find out more about how we can help, sign up to our newsletter today.

If you’re worried that you’ve been a victim of fraud please contact Action Fraud – the UK’s national reporting centre for fraud and cyber crime.

Please note we’ve used links to external websites. Although we make every effort to ensure these links are accurate, up to date and relevant, Fair For You Enterprise CIC cannot take responsibility for pages maintained by external providers. Views expressed on external sites we link to are not necessarily those of Fair For You Enterprise CIC.

If you come across any external links that don’t work, we would be grateful if you could report them to the web content team.

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