Many of the more than 100 people who packed a conference room on Monday (Aug. 17) to hear experts from Google, Pro Seniors and AARP talk about protecting yourself online came away planning to enact a few tips.
The workshop, hosted by the United Way of Cincinnati, drew a few savvy area residents who shared their stories about experiences with con artists and tips that kept them from becoming victims. Many left the workshop promising themselves that they would take action recommended by the panelists.
Tips from panelists Hibah Hussain of Google, Rosa Angelica Maymi of AARP, and Amy Kurlansky of Pro Seniors:
- Don’t provide personal information to anyone online or on the phone unless you initiated the interaction, even if they claim to be from credible sources, such as the government.
- Check your online finandcial accounts regularly, perhaps daily. Don’t wait until your quarterly or monthly financial statements arrive to check whether your account has been compromised. That might be too late to effectively deal with the situation.
- Don’t open emails unless you know the sender. Emails can spread viruses and other problems that can damage your computer and compromise your personal information.
- Take advantage of the annual free credit check offered by each of the three major credit reporting services.
- If your account is compromised, immediately notify your financial institution, which can help you obtain a credit freeze so you credit history is not affected.
- Take free Google online security and privacy check-ups at https://myaccount.google.com
AARP’s Fraud Watch Network offers Cincinnati area residents free workshops, at libraries throughout the region, to beat scammers at their own game. Click on WORKSHOPS to find one near you.
More information about the AARP Fraud Watch Network is available at www.aarp.org/fraudwatchnetwork