Mindful of the major risk of internet communication, Afriland First Group has set up security mechanisms and designed security techniques to protect confidential information of users. As an end user you play a major role in the fight against risks such as virus attacks, unauthorised access and online fraud.
Find below tried and tested practices and tips to help you protect yourself and understand your role as a user within the framework of internet usage.
«Phishing» is the fraudulent use of emails and copies of genuine website to steal the financial data and other personal information of computer users. This practice is getting more and more sophisticated. Customers of financial institutions are increasingly the target of such scams.
The tools used for phishing often seem genuine and appear as if generated by real individuals, organisations or websites. That is why the following precautions should be taken:
Be careful when you click on a link, open an attached file or download a file in an email no matter the file type or the identity of its sender.
Never open a website through a link in a suspicious email. The link and the address of the sender make be fake.
Avoid including sensible personal information in electronic messages. We recommend that you directly call the enterprise.
Beware of any request that requires you to take urgent action (e.g. « security check », « activation », « verification » or any request for money transfer or for making a payment).
Precautions for online banking and financial services:
To connect to the website of your financial institution, always type its official address (URL).
Systematical verify that the letter « S » immediately comes after the prefixe « http » and that the icon of a closed lock is displayed at the right lower angle of your screen. It shows that the website and the connection are scrambled. Verify the confidentiality policy and security instructions of websites of financial institutions.
Beware of any request that requires you to disclose or verify your personal information or information on your accounts, especially passwords or other data likely to be used by a financial services provider to identify you (date of birth, the maiden name of your mother, etc.).
Precautions for computer systems:
Update your computer software (system patches , antivirus, anti-spyware) by means of the latest security corrections.
Immediately contact the institution involved if you notice anything abnormal concerning your bank account or your online accounts.
If you have problems with your computer and/or internet connection during an online banking session and cannot find an explantion for such trouble, sign out immediately and contact the computer help service of your bank for help.
Email fraud is a common method hackers use to steal your personal information. Here are some of the examples of how they do it:
1- E-mails with illegal proposals that promote products at lower, and indeed unrealistic, costs with a view to obtaining your bank card information or some other financial information. Generally, the products are never delivered.
2- Scams through requests for help that promise huge sums of money to recipients in exchange for financial assistance. An example is requesting the recipient to provide his or her account information so as to recieve a bank transfer. Such information is used for purposes of fraud.
3- Emails from fake senders that seem to be company executives e.g. John Doe, CEO. These emails generally require the provision of confidential or personal information at sometimes contain « special offers » requiring a reply..
Whenever you contact a financial institution or the sender of an email to verify information, only use a telephone number from a reliable source.
Spams are targeted undesirable bulk emails. Such emails often contain offers for the purchase of products or a request to enter a deal or consult a website. These fake proposals may seem genuine. Many people have incurred losses just by replying to them.
Below are a few tips to help you avaoid falling prey to spam scams:
1- Protect your personal data. Do not share whatever financial or personal information with suspicious organisations or individuals, whose identity you have not verified.
2- Verify who the sender is. Verify the identity of the enterprise and its contact information.
3- Do not succumb to pressure. Beware of emails that request you to «act immediately. »
4- Read all statements in small characters. All contracts must be in writing and must be scrupulously read before payment.
5- Beware of free offers. Never exchange money or financial information for a free product. Never buy a product advertised through a message you never requested.
6- Protect your date in a proactive manner. It is advisable to regularly assess the risks you run whenever you are doing business online and to take appropriate measures to safeguard your activities and professional data.