Skip to main content

Do Your Part, Be Cyber Smart During Cybersecurity Awareness Month

October is known for colorful leaves, toasty bonfires and, of course, all things pumpkin! But did you know that October is also Cybersecurity Awareness Month? Now's a great time to do your part and refresh your cyber safety knowledge so you can stay secure online!

How cyber-safe are you? Ask yourself the following questions to find out:

#1: Do you use strong, complex passwords for each account?

Most people have dozens of online accounts for different websites and apps. Understandably, keeping track of all those usernames and passwords can be difficult! Instead of trying to create and memorize multiple unique passwords, use a password manager to generate and store hard-to-crack passwords for each of your accounts. This way, you don't have to worry about reusing the same passwords over and over again, which puts your data at risk.

#2: Do you use multi-factor authentication on your accounts?

Turning on multi-factor authentication (MFA) on your accounts makes it 99% percent less likely that you'll get hacked.

Multi-factor authentication (also called two-step factor authentication) adds an extra layer of security when logging into your accounts by asking you to provide two forms of information:

    • ​Something you know — like a PIN or the name of your favorite pet, along with
    • Something you have — like a one-time code sent via text, email or phone call, or
    • Something you are — like a fingerprint scan or facial recognition. This is referred to as biometrics; it's the safest layered protection.

Know that you know what MFA is, be sure to opt-in on your financial accounts, social media accounts, streaming services and more! 

#3: Do you update software and systems regularly?

Hackers love to take advantage of “bugs" or flaws in software systems to steal victims' personal data. To help protect yourself online, make sure all your devices — including smartphones, tablets, laptops, and smart TVs — are always up-to-date with the latest operating systems. While you're at it, update the apps and web browsers you use, too! It's a good idea to enable automatic updates so you're always protected with the latest software fixes. 

#4: Do you know how to spot a phishing attempt?

“Phishing" occurs when cybercriminals send fraudulent messages (usually via email) posing as reputable sources such as customer support for retailers, credit cards, banks or credit unions. The goal is to cast a wide net and lure victims into revealing their personal or financial information.

While phishing is all-too-common, there are ways to spot the signs of a scam and avoid becoming a victim:

    • Look for misspelled words and grammatical errors.
    • Hover over the sender's display name to view the full email address. Cybercriminals will “spoof," or fake, a display name to make emails seem like they're from a legitimate source.
    • Think before you click! Does the message use an unusual, urgent or threatening tone? Cybercriminals use scare tactics to trick their victims into acting fast without thinking.

If any part of the message seems suspicious, don't click on links or attachments. Instead, contact the source directly to see if they were actually trying to reach you.

#5: Are your social media accounts secure?

When it comes to social media, it's important to share with care. Check your privacy settings on your social media accounts and limit what information you share online, such as your full name, address, birthday and location. Remember, not everyone is who they say they are on social media, so keep your connections to only the people you know and trust.

Wright-Patt Credit Union Helps You Protect Against Fraud!

At Wright-Patt Credit Union (WPCU), our first priority is keeping our members' accounts safe and secure. WPCU accounts come with Zero Liability Protection, meaning you won't be held responsible for unauthorized transactions on your accounts. And, WPCU accounts are federally insured up to $250,000 by the NCUA (National Credit Union Administration).

WPCU uses several effective measures to keep your personal information secure: 

  • When logging in to your Mobile or Online Banking account, your answers to a series of personal questions identify you as an authorized user.
  • If unusual/suspicious activity is identified on your account, you may be contacted about the authenticity of the transaction in question.
  • WPCU members have access to identity theft assistance through Identity Fraud, Inc., as well as discounted identity protection plans.
  • WPCU debit cards have an embedded microchip that encrypts information to increase data security when making in-store transactions, be sure to use your chip whenever possible!
  • WPCU also has enhanced monitoring programs to specifically watch for suspected fraud on debit cards.

As always, WPCU is here to help you stay informed, protect your personal and financial information an d avoid becoming a victim of fraud, including cybercrimes! For more helpful fraud prevention tips, tools and resources, visit​