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Identity thieves lurk online


Published: 06/02/2016

by Arielle Duke

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Most financial institutions offer a security commitment that protects you while banking on the Internet.

They are created to shield you if you suffer a financial loss from unauthorized online transactions. However, you'll lose that fraud protection if you don't take adequate precautions.

March is Fraud Prevention Month in Canada. If you haven't already done so, now would be a good time to take steps to ensure your financial institution's online security commitments continue to protect you.

Here are some other tips to protect yourself while conducting online transactions:

• When shopping online, do not let a computer or other electronic device remember your password.

• Make sure to log out of your accounts.

• When banking online, check for the lock icon in the URL bar and that the URL begins with https to be sure you have a secure connection.

• Ensure your firewall, anti-virus and spyware software are current.

• Don't provide any personal information via email.

• Be cautious when signing up for a financial aggregation service. These services pull together your financial information from various sources (your bank, credit-card, etc.), so you can manage all of your accounts in one spot. To access your accounts, aggregators need your personal identification number (PIN) and passwords. This may void the security commitments provided by your financial institution.

• So before you sign up for this service, be sure you check with your financial institution to make sure the protections they offer are not jeopardized.

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