Since the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic, we have all been very mindful to protect our health. It is also important to protect our cyber health, and here are a few guidelines that will help you stay safe, healthy, and protected while online:
- Keep your computer virus definition files current with the latest updates from your provider and run virus scans on your computer daily.
- Apply all critical updates for your operating system on your home computers, smartphones, and tablets.
- Make sure you have a firewall (either hardware or software) on your home network.
- Make sure your home WiFi router is password protected. This will help ensure that no outside users can be on your home network, potentially stealing your information on your computers.
- Make sure your home WiFi is configured to use encryption (do NOT use clear text).
- Change the default Administrator password on all internet-connected devices on your home network (e.g., your firewall, smart TVs, Ring doorbells, Next thermostats, cameras, Apple TVs, Xboxes, Playstations, etc.).
- Change all important passwords a minimum of every 6 months; they should contain at least 12 characters, if not more, and incorporate capital and lowercase letters, numbers, and symbols. Do not use the same password for different sites.
- Use an online password manager to store your passwords for extra protection.
- If applicable, turn on dual factor authentication for any online service you use. Dual factor authentication can consist of security questions or even the site sending a text to your cell phone.
- Do not click on any internet pop-ups or ads, or on any email links. Go directly to the website to view the information you want. Fake links like these are hard to spot and are a great way for hackers to install nefarious applications to steal your personal information.
- Make sure your financial institutions (broker, attorney, accountant, etc.) send confidential information via a secure client portal or through encrypted email.
- Verify any money movement transactions with your financial institutions and double-check any money movement instructions by phone, not email.
Gamble Jones takes your personal and confidential information very seriously. Here are some of the procedures we take to protect you:
- We voice verify all requests for money movement. If you send us an email to move money, expect a phone call from our client service team to verify your request.
- We will only contact you using the phone number we have for you in our system. If an email has a different contact number, we will not use it. If you have changed your phone number or address, please let us know.
- We will only send personal and confidential information via the secure online portal or our encrypted email system.
- We provide a secure document vault to our clients to store personal electronic copies of their trust, will, or any other document deemed necessary to protect. This vault protects our clients from disasters that could destroy the paper version and makes it easily accessible at any point in time.
- Even in this time as we all work from home, we monitor all office computers for intrusions, viruses, and spyware to make sure your personal information stays safe.
Cyber security is extremely important, especially in times like these, and Gamble Jones can only do so much to help protect you, our client. Implementing the procedures above is a great start to protecting your online profile. If you would like to take that protection to the next level, LifeLock and other identity protection services like it are great resources for monitoring and protecting your online profile. Through a partnership with our primary software firm, our clients may receive a 20% discount for life on LifeLock. If you decide their service is what you need, please call your relationship manager to receive the discount code before calling LifeLock.
All of the procedures above can help you become more secure and provide you with greater peace of mind in knowing that your finances are protected. If you have any questions, please reach out to your relationship manager. We are here to help.
P.S. Please feel free to forward this memo to anyone you feel might find it helpful. Thank you for being a part of the Gamble Jones Family. If any of your family or friends could use our help, we look forward to meeting them.