5 Tips to Protect Your Identity

In this brief podcast episode, Matt and Chris from EWA discuss the importance of cybersecurity and provide five key tips for protecting personal information and preventing identity theft:

  1. Use a Separate Email Address for Financial Accounts: They recommend creating a separate, secret email address specifically for financial transactions to minimize exposure of your primary email.
  2. Strengthen Passwords: They emphasize the need for strong passwords and suggest using mnemonic passwords, incorporating numbers not related to personal information, and adding special characters for complexity.
  3. Utilize a Password Manager: Matt and Chris stress the importance of using a password manager to maintain unique passwords for each account securely.
  4. Enable Two-Step Verification: Two-step verification is highlighted as a crucial security measure to prevent unauthorized access, even if someone obtains your password.
  5. Be Cautious with Public WiFi: The podcast advises caution when using public WiFi networks, suggesting the use of a VPN (Virtual Private Network) for added security. If a VPN isn’t available, using a mobile hotspot is recommended as a safer alternative.

Throughout the episode, they stress the importance of being proactive in safeguarding personal information and encourage listeners to reach out with any questions or seek additional resources for further protection.

Video Transcript

Hello, Matt from EWA. Chris with EWA. Today we are talking about cybersecurity and how important it is to protect yourself by following some of our top five tips to protect your personal information which ultimately protect your net worth from getting hacked.

Chris, what? Statistically, how were consumers affected in 2021? Yeah, so estimates suggests that 54 billion was lost by consumers as a result of identity theft fraud last year. Wow. There are some very common sense tips when it comes to protecting your identity from cybercrimes.

So today we want to provide five tips that either A, you may not have thought about before, or b are probably obvious but annoying. We’re here to provide the accountability to make sure you follow through and put some of these processes in motion to protect yourself.

Chris, what’s tip number one? So, tip number one is to use nowadays, your email is everywhere. So tip number one is to use a separate email address for financial accounts. If you think with social media just signing up for subscriptions, your email address nowadays is everywhere.

So recommendation number one is to use a separate, completely secret email address for anything financial related. Awesome. I’ll admit first, I use the same email address for everything, so didn’t hold me accountable to setting that myself.

Tell us about tip number two. So, tip number two is password strength. Research suggests that over 50% of users actually have a weak password. So our suggestion is to strengthen this up with some tips, such as one using a mnemonic password.

So an example we have on the screen here is just using your favorite song lyrics. For example, this is hey, Jude. And using the first letters of each word and using that as your password. Taking that a step further, consider using numbers which aren’t your date of birth or Social Security and using those as brackets in the front and in the end of your password.

And then lastly, consider using special characters like an explanation point or a star within the password to just add a little bit more complexity. I have one question follow up. Is that your favorite song?

It is not easy example and just wanted to include it here just because. I never heard of that song. Okay. All right, so tell us about tip number three. Yeah, tip number three kind of hand in hand with the password.

But consider using a password manager. So one of the worst things that you can do is actually using the same password for all of your accounts. Just like the emails, our information is everywhere nowadays.

So our recommendation would be to use a separate password for each account and use an actual password manager to keep everything straight. You can get a password manager for as little as ten dollars to thirty dollars.

And this is encrypted. So even if somebody were to get through to your account, they would have to hack each individual password in order to get under your excellent, excellent. So Chris, going from tip number three to tip number four all around password protection.

This is one of the most annoying things, I think personally, but probably the most necessary. What is tip number four? Yeah, tip number four is two step verification. So even if somebody does get your password, very important that we have this set up.

What this is, you’re probably very familiar with, it is a text code or an email coming through to your phone, which you enter a secret code after your password, then that lets you into your account from there.

Tip number five is a very obvious one, but one that is very important to follow and where it’s believed, a lot of identity hacks occur. Yes, a tip number five. Is around public WiFi. So this is the most dangerous place that you can be online for your data.

So suggestion would be if you have access to a VPN to always use that whenever you’re on public WiFi. What this does is creates your own separate network that completely protects you against any hacking that can happen on this public WiFi.

Then the last one would just be to consider you’re using a mobile hotspot if you don’t have a VPN, this is just something you can launch like on an iPhone. You go into your settings and toggle on the mobile hotspot.

And this is completely separate from a network because you’re using your phone’s data, but it’s the safest method. Awesome. Thank you, Christopher. Yeah. Please let us know if you have any questions on these five tips and know this is simply what we believe is an 80 20 analysis.

What’s 20% of the tips and tactics you can do to protect 80% of the potential risks that are out there. There’s many other things you can do to protect your identity and to protect your accounts from being hacked.

There are some other good resources that we would recommend and we welcome you to email us with questions.

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