When using your credit unions’ online or mobile banking services, your main goal is most likely to balance your account or ensure that a check has been deposited. While these essential tasks are made easy with online banking, Maine’s Credit Unions want members to be aware it’s important to take precautions online. These services are safe and secure, but there are steps you can take on your devices to ensure that your personal or account information is not in anyone else’s hands but your own.
Here are the top ten tips that credit unions offer their members about securing their online banking accounts:
- Update your web browsers and computer software, such as your Windows or Mac operating systems. Threats from viruses and attackers often take advantage of vulnerabilities in outdated software packages. Contact the software vendor directly to access any available updates.
- Install antivirus/anti-spyware software to protect your computer, and to detect and remove viruses. Make sure your software is up-to-date, new viruses appear daily.
- Install software for spam filtering and spam blocking. Don’t respond to “spammed” emails.
- Do not open email offers from a source you don’t recognize. If you believe an email is fraudulent, don’t reply to the email, click any links within the email, or open any attachments.
- Beware of any email or pop-up messages declaring your account is in jeopardy or asking for personal information. Your credit union will never ask for personal information via email. When in doubt, call or visit your local branch with any questions.
- Do not click the links in suspicious emails. If an email seems suspicious, don’t click the link asking to be taken off the sender’s list. A response only confirms the accuracy of your email address and may result in even more messages filling up your inbox.
- Never submit your credit card details or other personal information on non-secure websites. Before submitting your user name and password to log on, make sure your browser window displays the closed padlock symbol and that the URL begins with “https://”. Secure web pages show a locked padlock icon , or in a box, at the bottom of the web browser screen.
- Never share your user names and passwords or store them on your computer.
- Be cautious when using public computers or shared computers. Public computers, including those at libraries, internet cafés, and schools are traditionally on open networks and can be susceptible to monitoring without your knowledge.
- Always log out when you are finished. After you’ve accessed sensitive account information online, log off the website and close your web browser.