Retirement accounts are like growing pots of money (or at least they should be). People build these over extended periods before retirement. With the advancement of technology, it is unfortunate that there are some unscrupulous individuals (hackers) out there who can make the funds disappear into thin air. Hackers usually strike when a person least expects. They gain access to the accounts and drain all the money. Luckily, there are ways you can protect your investment to avoid being broke in your golden years. Always ensure that you take necessary security measures that can prevent a thief from wiping your retirement account clean like:
Monitor your Account
Many people regularly check their credit card or checking accounts. However, they forget about their retirement account. They only remember the savings when they get the quarterly statements. Most will not even go into detail because they assume that everything is in its place.
It is essential that you always keep an eye on your account now and then electronically. You can set up alerts to be in the know with everything that happens with the cash you put away. Doing this can let you know if there is any unusual activity to proceed with taking the right action to secure your hard-earned money before it is too late.
Zealously Protect the Credentials of the Account
Unless it is someone that you trust with your life, you need to think twice before sharing your login details with anyone else. It applies even to companies that claim to help monitor your account. If such a firm were to be hacked, it would mean that you will be vulnerable. Your credentials could end up in the wrong hands, and the hackers can use the details to steal from you.
Lock Down your Password
Gone are the days when you would use your birthday dates to come up with a password for your retirement account. Note that the right password security goes a long way in protecting your money from fraudsters. Come up with a secure password that has eight or more characters. Mix things up with lower-case, upper-case, symbols and numbers in a random order. It makes it tough for the hackers to break. Avoid using one password for numerous accounts. You are better off creating a unique password for all your accounts. This way, if the crooks get their hands on one of your passwords in a data breach, they will not immediately have access to all your accounts Do not forget about beef up security questions while making the passwords. Remember that a secure password will not be worth it if the mean guys can answer your security question by making a quick trip to your social media accounts.
Set up Two-Step Verification
Signing up for two-step verification is one of the simplest ways to boost the security of your account. It implies that in addition to a unique password, you will also need a one-time numeric code to log in. You will get through email or text message when you try to log in. It enhances security in that a hacker who can guess or craft your password will still not be in a position to access the funds unlawfully.
Never Sign-in Using Public Wi-Fi Connection
Logging into your account over a Wi-Fi connection that is unsecured can land you in lots of trouble. The connections could feature data-stealing virus that hackers use to access all your retirement account details. If you must use the connection say in cases of emergencies, add extra security with a Virtual Private network. It creates an encrypted and secure link with third-party servers. Use the link to access your sites. The additional level of protection may come in handy and keep away corrupt persons who are after your cash.
Beware of Phishing Scams
You must be vigilant and careful at all times in all matters that concern your retirement account. Criminals are known to send out emails that appear as though they are legit asking unsuspecting account holders for their login information. Some emails come with links that you are supposed to click. Doing this will lead you to a fake website that the trickster’s design to capture your password and username when you try to log in.
It is advisable to be extra careful when dealing with emails which you cannot verify the source to beat them hands down at their own game. Investing in internet security products is another excellent solution that can help confirm the official sites. They post warnings when you try to access sites that are unconfirmed protecting you from phishing.
Secure Personal Computers
It is quite unfortunate that the hackers out there have brilliant minds. They can directly steal credentials from your home or office computer. To be one step ahead, install quality anti-malware and anti-virus without forgetting a firewall that will keep the thugs away. Always use a login for the computer so that unauthorized personnel cannot quickly reach your files.