Susan Jung |

We live in a crazy world today where hackers and other dark forces attempt to steal and disrupt. It’s a never-ending race towards greater security and protection to avoid breaches in online security. At Destination Wealth Management, we take our responsibility very seriously and attempt to protect our systems from disruption and unauthorized access. We are diligent in putting up additional protections on your behalf.

There are many online threats which present a challenge for businesses and governmental agencies.  These threats include the following:

  • Hackers opportunistically scan the internet looking for well-known vulnerabilities or they identify and attack specific targets.  Corporate networks, social networking sites, and electronic mail are among their favorite targets.  
  • Malicious software (malware) includes viruses, worms, spyware, trojan horse programs, and more.  Malware is a program inserted into a system to compromise the confidentiality, integrity, or availability of data. 
  • Ransomware prevents or limits users from accessing their system via malware. Ransomware asks you to pay a ransom using online payment methods to regain access to your system or data. Ransomware is one of the most widely used method of attacks. 
  • Fake Security Software Warnings (Scareware) - use of pop-up warnings alerting a user their system is infected and then prompting the user to download and pay for special software to protect the system.
  • Phishing attacks is the attempt to acquire sensitive information such as usernames, passwords, and credit card details (and sometimes, indirectly, money) by masquerading as a trustworthy entity in an electronic communication. The message will often ask for a response by following a link to a fake website or email address where you will provide confidential information. 
  • Password attacks are focused on cracking a victim's password so that the attacker may obtain access to a secured system.  A username/password combination is typically the standard form of authentication on most systems.

In next week’s update, we will share with you a few of the steps we take to do our best to protect against these unwanted attacks. We pride ourselves on a robust effort towards security but recognize there is no room for complacency. It’s a never-ending battle.

In the meantime, what can you do to protect yourself against online scams? Here are a few basic tips:

  • Be careful what you click on. If you don’t recognize the sender or the attachment looks suspicious, be very careful.
  • Don’t use the same passwords for all your online accounts. I know it’s easy to remember one password, but that opens you up to risk across all sites you have access to.
  • Look carefully at the email address from any corporate communication. Just today, for example, I received an email from Federal Express asking for information about an undelivered package. The email address was not from a FedEx domain. 
  • If the website says they do not have secure protection, avoid that website.

There are many other ways to avoid online theft of information. Here’s a helpful article with some basic suggestions (some of which I’ve already mentioned).

If you have any questions about this information, please let us now. Always happy to help.

The opinions expressed herein are provided for informational purposes only and are not intended as investment advice. All investments involve risk, including loss of principal invested. Past performance does not guarantee future performance. Individual client accounts may vary. Although the information provided to you on this site is obtained or compiled from sources we believe to be reliable, Destination Wealth Management cannot and does not guarantee the accuracy, validity, timeliness or completeness of any information or data made available to you for any particular purpose. Any links to other websites are used at your own risk.