How to protect your financial information from scammers – The Collegian | #phishing | #scams


College students are a prime target for identity thieves. Scammers believe young adults are not aware of the crime and don’t know how to protect their personal information. By following a few easy-to-implement strategies, you will protect yourself now and in the future.

 

Keep your devices secure:

If you regularly manage your finances using a mobile app, keeping your device secure is necessary. Don’t let friends, roommates or others learn your password. Use security settings when available. Saved passwords are convenient, but can be easily accessed if someone can log on to your device. Change saved passwords frequently.

 

Phishing scams:

As old as phishing scams are, they are still used to access personal information. If you don’t recognize the sender, check the return email and the name of the sender. Often a phishing email sender name is inconsistent with the name of the person identified as the sender.

 

Monitor accounts:

Review financial accounts frequently by looking at bank statements and credit card bills. Pay attention to inaccuracies. Contact the bank or the credit card company to report the error. 

 

Keep financial documents secure:

Set up a system to securely save financial documents such as financial aid statements, bills, payment invoices, etc. Whether the system is electronic or paper, keep them in a lock file. Shred documents with your name, address and any other personal information; even junk mail should be shredded. A scammer needs just a small amount of personal information to steal your identity.

What can you do to keep on top of it and make sure that only the right people have access? Once a year, you can get a free credit report – more in-depth than a credit score – to track when someone used your information. Making sure that only the loans you have are listed, and not new or unknown ones, can keep you on top of things if someone does get ahold of your identity.

 



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