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Three Tips for Excellent Email Protection

Three Tips for Excellent Email Protection

Use different email accounts, enable two-factor authentication, change your email account 4X / year, plus some bonus tips.

Email security is important. 

Without secure email, your entire online presence is at risk. And most of the responsibility for email security lies with you.

Email providers can’t guarantee your cybersecurity. Hackers attack email providers to gain access to user accounts. But they also directly attack individual email accounts, using phishing, malware, social engineering and other scams.

Here are three tips to dramatically improve your email security from JP Morgan’s Cybersecurity Awareness document. 

Email Tip #1: Use Different Personal & Business Email Accounts

If you segment business and personal email accounts, you decrease cybersecurity risk by 50%. It takes extra effort and time to manage two accounts, but it’s much better than the alternative. Here’s what two email accounts look like…

Example Email For Business:
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Example Email For Personal:
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Once you setup your business and personal email accounts, start using them in that way. Send your contacts an appropriate announcement and interact with people on each account accordingly. This will help limit the downside risk if one of your accounts gets hacked. 

Email Tip #2: Enable Dual-Factor Authentication

Enable dual-factor authentication in your email service when available to help prevent unauthorized access. This is probably the best thing you can do to secure your email.

Dual Factor Authentication, also known as DFA (as an acronym), is an extra layer of security that is known as "multi factor authentication". It requires a username & password but also something that only that user has on them – like cell phone text verification. Using dual-factor authentication will help dramatically improve your email security. 

Email Tip #3: Change Your Password 4 Times Per Year

Email passwords are your first line of defense against a cyberattack. Hackers use dictionaries, names, linguistic patterns, and can break into over 60% of passwords used today – possibly including yours. And worse, email providers also get hacked thus compromising your passwords. 

Here are some ways to improve your email password security. 

  • Use long and complex passwords – at least 10 characters.
  • Use special characters and numbers.
  • Change your email password 3-4 times per year. 

Bonus:  Extra Tips to ‘Bulletproof’ Your Email Accounts

Following the above 3 tips will put you ahead of most other email users.  However, if you want to go the extra mile to ‘bulletproof’ your email accounts, here are more email security tips:

Image from: JP Morgan’s Guide to Cybersecurity Awareness

Other Cybersecurity Areas To Watch

Email security will be important for any person with an email account going forward. Make sure you’re aware of the dangers and follow these tips to stay safe online. 

  


 

IMPORTANT DISCLOSURE INFORMATION: Please remember that past performance may not be indicative of future results.  Different types of investments involve varying degrees of risk, and there can be no assurance that the future performance of any specific investment, investment strategy, or product (including the investments and/or investment strategies recommended or undertaken by Republic Wealth Advisors), or any non-investment related content, made reference to directly or indirectly in this blog will be profitable, equal any corresponding indicated historical performance level(s), be suitable for your portfolio or individual situation, or prove successful.  Due to various factors, including changing market conditions and/or applicable laws, the content may no longer be reflective of current opinions or positions.  Moreover, you should not assume that any discussion or information contained in this blog serves as the receipt of, or as a substitute for, personalized investment advice from Republic Wealth Advisors.  To the extent that a reader has any questions regarding the applicability of any specific issue discussed above to his/her individual situation, he/she is encouraged to consult with the professional advisor of his/her choosing.  Republic Wealth Advisors is neither a law firm nor a certified public accounting firm and no portion of this blog content should be construed as legal or accounting advice.  If you are a Republic Wealth Advisors client, please remember to contact Republic Wealth Advisors, in writing, if there are any changes in your personal/financial situation or investment objectives for the purpose of reviewing/evaluating/revising our previous recommendations and/or services. A copy of the Republic Wealth Advisors’ current written disclosure statement discussing our advisory services and fees is available upon request.

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Are You Making These 5 Email Security Mistakes?

Are You Making These 5 Email Security Mistakes?

Phishing attacks, weak passwords, password changing, virus scan issues, and more. Check out the details to help avoid future email hacks and identity theft. 

Data security is pretty important these days.  

According to Identity Theft Resource Center, an industry watchdog group, the number of U.S. data breaches hit an all-time in 2016 with 1,093 breaches. That’s up over 40% from the previous year (780)! Identity thieves are after your personal information. If they can get to it, they can wreak havoc on your personal finances for months and possibly years.

One of the chief ways thieves hack into your personal information is through your email account. That’s why it’s so important to practice good email security. With help from Network Doctor, here are the top 5 mistakes people make with their email security:

Mistake #1: Not Recognizing Phishing Attacks

Scammers use phishing emails to deceive users into providing sensitive information. Recipients often get redirected to a website where they're asked to update personal information (like a password or banking information). Sometimes the email message contains malicious software that hacks into your computer. Phishing emails can be identified with:

  • Grammar or spelling discrepancies.
  • Usually include some kind of link.
  • Often describe a type of threat. Ex. Warning - Your Account May Have Been Compromised
  • Use familiar graphics from trusted companies. Note: Don’t trust every logo in your email inbox.
  • Slightly altered Web addresses that resemble recognizable company names.
    Ex: Securitys.wellllsfargos.com instead or WellsFargo.com (note the  misspelling in the first URL)

Phishing scams can be reported in several different ways. For example, email clients almost always have a “report as spam” option to help eliminate threats. However, if you already clicked through to a suspicious website, report the website as a scam through your browser.

Mistake #2: Using a Weak Password

There are many several “don’ts” for creating and using passwords. Here are a few best practices:

  • Never use the same password twice.
  • Each password should be unique.
  • 15+ characters long
  • Use symbols, numbers, capital and lowercase letters.
  • Capitalize a middle letter, use the @ symbol for the letter “a” or the number “0” in place of the letter “o.”
  • Never use keyboard walks (like 12345678 or qwerty).
  • No dog’s name, mother’s maiden name and other easy-to-find information.

Mistake #3: Forgetting To Change Your Password Every 90 Days

Passwords should be changed every 3-4 months (90-120 days). They should also never be repeated within an 18-month period. Set a reminder for yourself to change your email password 3-4 times per year if your email program doesn't make you do that automatically.

Mistake #4: Not Staying Current with Your Virus Scan Program

Free antivirus and anti-spyware protection helps. But it usually doesn't cut it with the growing list of cyberattack tactics used to infiltrate email accounts. 

Make sure to configure your settings to automatically perform scans on a regular basis. The frequency at which you scan for viruses will depend entirely on your computer usage. If you spend a lot of time on the internet, your research can take you into uncharted territory. So scan daily. Otherwise, set it to scan weekly.

Mistake #5: Answering Spam Messages

People sometimes reply to spam messages in an attempt to be removed from the email list. Big mistake. What you may be doing is telling a spammer you have an active email account. Instead, block, delete or mark the email as spam.

Bonus: Not Logging Out & Saving Passwords On A Public Computer

Using a public computer carries its own risks. If you don't log out after using a public computer to check your email, you could be putting your account at risk. One click of the back button may lead a stranger directly into your account. Don't save passwords on a public computer and always logout before you step away.

Avoid these 6 mistakes on email security and you’ll be ahead of most internet users. That will help keep your financial records secure though one of the most vulnerable channels: your personal email account. 

 


 

IMPORTANT DISCLOSURE INFORMATION: Please remember that past performance may not be indicative of future results.  Different types of investments involve varying degrees of risk, and there can be no assurance that the future performance of any specific investment, investment strategy, or product (including the investments and/or investment strategies recommended or undertaken by Republic Wealth Advisors), or any non-investment related content, made reference to directly or indirectly in this blog will be profitable, equal any corresponding indicated historical performance level(s), be suitable for your portfolio or individual situation, or prove successful.  Due to various factors, including changing market conditions and/or applicable laws, the content may no longer be reflective of current opinions or positions.  Moreover, you should not assume that any discussion or information contained in this blog serves as the receipt of, or as a substitute for, personalized investment advice from Republic Wealth Advisors.  To the extent that a reader has any questions regarding the applicability of any specific issue discussed above to his/her individual situation, he/she is encouraged to consult with the professional advisor of his/her choosing.  Republic Wealth Advisors is neither a law firm nor a certified public accounting firm and no portion of this blog content should be construed as legal or accounting advice.  If you are a Republic Wealth Advisors client, please remember to contact Republic Wealth Advisors, in writing, if there are any changes in your personal/financial situation or investment objectives for the purpose of reviewing/evaluating/revising our previous recommendations and/or services. A copy of the Republic Wealth Advisors’ current written disclosure statement discussing our advisory services and fees is available upon request.

 

 

 

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