November 14. 2014
By Jennifer Calandra, co-founder and COO of TrustDale-certified Calandra Financial Group
Now more than ever, you must be protecting your financial information! In October, hackers accessed the personal information of over 83 million JP Morgan Chase customers. Fortunately, the hackers weren’t able to access financial information or gain access to client accounts. However, they were able to access the names, phone numbers, addresses and email addresses of any current or past customer who logged into Chase.com, JPMorganOnline, Chase mobile or JPMorgan mobile. This unprecedented cyber-attack on a major American financial company naturally raises questions about the state of security in the financial services industry.
Though statistics on this type of data breach are scarce, it’s safe to say that millions of Americans are at risk. There are many ways that you can protect yourself from identity theft and fraud. Some of these include:
- Be wary of emails or social media messages asking you to log into a financial account. Never click on links embedded in those emails; log into your accounts by manually typing the web address into your browser.
- Never give out personal over the phone from someone claiming to represent the IRS or a financial institution.
- Protect your sensitive information by collecting mail promptly and shredding documents containing account numbers, credit card numbers or your Social Security number.
- Monitor your financial and credit card statements carefully to identify suspicious activity. If you find fraudulent transactions, report immediately to reduce your financial liability.