VOLUME 2 ISSUE 4

FOUR SIMPLE TIPS TO PROTECT YOUR KIDS ONLINE

The internet is an amazing place where kids can learn, play, innovate and connect with others. However, with the digital world evolving at an increasing pace, how can you make sure your child is safe from the dangers of the internet? Your kids may know how to search for something on Google, but they might not know anything about viruses, digital privacy, email scams, and other internet safety and security issues. To make your kids aware of these issues, consider the following four simple tips on internet safety:

1. Don’t share personal information Try to teach them what information to share with others. Your child should keep all personal information away from the internet. Information such as home address, school name or phone number, parents’ work address, neighborhood, and so on should not be handed out by them to anybody for any reason. Some companies trick children by offering them free things in exchange for information, so help them recognize the signs of a scam.

2. Don’t give account details to anyone (except parents) Your child needs to understand that their account details like username and password are extremely private and should not be given to others for any reason. Kids are never too old to be reminded that passwords should never be shared with anyone, even with the closest of friends. Make sure your child knows how to guard their passwords. The strongest passwords are combinations of mixed case letters, symbols and numbers, and should not contain names or other identifiable information that can be easy to guess. Promote safety while respecting the privacy of your child by inviting them to seal their account details in an envelope, and promise to unfold it only in case of an emergency.

Most parents are aware of the possibility of bullying and the devastating impacts this can have on children of any age. Let them know about cyberbullying, internet safety and how they can protect themselves. Furthermore, encourage them to always tell you if they feel they are being bullied in any way.

3. Ask before downloading anything Let them know that they should check with you first before downloading or installing software, or doing anything that could hurt laptops, computers, tablets, or other devices. Online attachments sometimes contain trojans, malware and viruses. Tell them they should never open an attachment from someone they don’t know. Walk through the privacy settings of their social accounts with them, and help activate them.

4. Be good on social media More than half of kids use social media by the age of 10. They can make controversial posts, illegally download music or movies that may be restricted in your country, and what not without thinking about the consequences. Therefore, ask your kids to be watchful of what they write or share on social media because someone will be watching them. And never forget, anything posted on the internet is forever!

“Promote safety while respecting the privacy of your child by inviting them to seal their account details in an envelope…”

12 WAYS TO PROTECT YOUR MOBILE DEVICE

Your mobile device provides convenient access to your email, bank and social media accounts. Unfortunately, it can potentially provide the same convenient access for criminals. Whittier Trust recommends following these tips to keep your information—and your money—safe.

1. Use the passcode lock on your smartphone and other devices. This will make it more difficult for thieves to access your information if your device is lost or stolen.

2. Log out completely when you finish a mobile banking session.

3. Protect your phone from viruses and malicious software, or malware, just like you do for your computer by installing mobile security software.

4. Use caution when downloading apps. Apps can contain malicious software, worms, and viruses. Beware of apps that ask for unnecessary “permissions.”

5. Download the updates for your phone and mobile apps.

6. Avoid storing sensitive information like passwords or a Social Security number on your mobile device.

7. Tell your financial institution immediately if you change your phone number or lose your mobile device.

8. Be aware of shoulder surfers. The most basic form of information theft is observation. Be aware of your surroundings especially when you’re punching in sensitive information.

9. Wipe your mobile device before you donate, sell or trade it using specialized software or using the manufacturer’s recommended technique. Some software allows you to wipe your device remotely if it is lost or stolen.

10. Beware of mobile phishing. Avoid opening links and attachments in emails and texts, especially from senders you don’t know. And be wary of ads (not from your security provider) claiming that your device is infected.

11. Watch out for public Wi-Fi. Public connections aren’t very secure, so don’t perform banking transactions on a public network. If you need to access your account, try disabling the Wi-Fi and switching to your mobile network.

12. Report any suspected fraud to your bank immediately.

“The most basic form of information theft is observation. Be aware of your surroundings especially when you’re punching in sensitive information.”