FROM THE BLOG
Protecting Wealth in the Digital Era
Posted by Prospera Financial on January 24, 2023
As Director of Information Technology at Prospera Financial Services, Marco Galvan is a vocal proponent of hyper vigilance and security when conducting business online.
Protecting wealth in the digital era requires intentional awareness, heightened vigilance, and staying informed of current threats and best practices. Financial advisors can see this persistent need as an opportunity to enhance their service offerings with cyber threat education for their clients. There are several fundamental areas that such focus would be beneficial and instructive to any client using the internet for wealth management.
- Email is a door open to the outside world. Most cyber fraud begins via email. Encourage clients to view email with increased scrutiny, especially when the message in question:
- Relates to any official business
- Appears to be urgent
- Displays odd or inconsistent formatting or language
- Includes a call to action that requires users to click on a link
- Email file attachments can be the most dangerous. Attachments should only be opened from verified known senders.
- Establishing a separate email account used only for personal business (communication with financial advisor, banking, brokerage, tax returns, etc.) has become a popular, effective way to segregate sensitive communication.
- Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA) protects access to accounts by mandating the use of a secondary identifier or code beyond a password. Clients should be encouraged to enable MFA on:
- Financial account portals
- Email accounts
- Social media accounts
- Any online portals that offer it
The best counsel to give clients who have concerns or questions about their exposure online is to use their resources. Asking questions of trusted friends, family, and their financial advisor can provide helpful and timely guidance. This is especially true if they suspect they may have fallen victim to a cyber-attack or fraud.
Ultimately, the best rule of thumb to remember when doing anything sensitive online, is this: When something on an email or online doesn’t look right, STOP, don’t click, and reach out to someone you trust for guidance.
Until next time,
Director, Information Technology