Simple Ways To Be Financially Prudent

Dr. Deepti Dwivedi

Have you come across a message that seems too good to be true? Today, we have information readily available. The need to visit libraries and read dozens of books to get the required knowledge can at times be substituted by using technology. While this is true, we are also subject to a lot of false information. As there is an abundance of information available, we must take the time to find out the integrity of the available information. Scammers often bank on the naivety of human nature and send out “Too good to be true” messages which we fall for and, as a result, become prey to scams. Here are some tips that you can implement to avoid such situations:

1. Do not give out personal information

If you go through your correspondences, especially the SMS and Emails, you will notice emails requesting you to divulge information such as account details, security details, etc. Financial Institutions NEVER ask for personal information through any media. Therefore, the next time you receive such correspondence, question the requested kind of information. If it compromises your security, avoid divulging it to anyone.

2. Avoid Suspicious links

Often, fraudulent emails ask you to click on links that seem harmless and appear legitimate on the surface. Unfortunately, we usually don’t realize that the fraudsters gain access to the data stored on our devices when we click on any suspicious links. Scammers can often retrieve information by inserting a virus of sorts. Therefore, it is advisable to update our antivirus software regularly. Besides this, avoid accessing links that look even remotely suspicious. 

3. Resist the pressure to act immediately

Often, these messages that we receive have a very urgent tone. Such statements make us want to be impulsive and make rash decisions, only to regret them later. Therefore, it is wise to analyze your action plan before implementing them. Ask yourself the critical questions, question the urgency of the notice, and act accordingly. When you remove the urgency from the situation, you can make decisions more calmly and save yourself from falling prey to any scam.

4. Review your social media setting regularly

A common way to get information on anybody is to check one’s social media accounts. While there is no harm in sharing our memories with the world through social media, judging the information we display on our accounts is crucial. “Is it going to compromise my security? “ is an excellent question to ask oneself when considering if we should post that information. We should also regularly check our social media settings. The settings are likely to reset to default whenever there is an update to the app. 

5. Change your passwords regularly

A good practice to ensure that fraudsters do not get access to your personal information is to regularly secure your information and change the security code. For example, making your passwords alpha-numeric and unique characters is vital. Setting a complex password ensures that your password isn’t predictable, which will protect your information from getting leaked. It is also essential to change this combination regularly as, over time, hackers can detect your password through other hacking methods.

6. Don’t be fooled by the advertisements

We as economic consumers also look to gain our money’s worth, if not more, and as such, when we see a sale or an opportunity to win something for free, we instinctively want to try our luck and get it. Unfortunately, instinctive behavior is a way scammers use to get our information. They entice naive consumers into thinking that they stand a chance of winning a prize, and to claim the prize, all that is left to do is click the link. Unfortunately, clicking the link gives a chance that you have granted your hacker an opportunity to hack your device. 

We should exercise caution when it comes to sharing and receiving information. Our social media accounts contain a wealth of personal data. You can ensure your safety by taking security measures before releasing any sensitive information on social media. Additionally, by educating ourselves on cyber security measures, we can better protect our personal information and ensure our data remains confidential.