The popularity of online trading is growing and there is a need to always use the best security measures in order to protect your online wallets and investment portfolios. New types of fraud appear every day, so it is crucial to stay attentive in order to protect your hard-earned money.
If you are new to online trading, please do not worry, although security measures that I describe below are new to you now, you will soon get used to them and they will become your habits. For now, you may keep them with you in a printed form to make sure that you always follow best practices when you start trading shares online.
Use a unique email address
When you sign up for an online trading site, all you need to start buying and selling stocks is a username, your email address, and of course password. When choosing an email address, it is recommended to create a new mailbox. Do not use this mailbox for any other activities or other websites.
This unique email address\box should be used only for online trading. It should be kept confidential and should not be used to communicate with other traders. This email address will be the source for receiving notifications and updates about your account that the trading platform may send. ProtonMail or Gmail accounts are great. They are free and have multiple authentication settings.
Always use a unique password
Despite the fact that the same password is easy to use for different websites, I should emphasize the critical importance of choosing a completely different password which you DO NOT USE ANYWHERE else. If an attacker gets a password that you use for multiple accounts, he will immediately get access to all other accounts of yours using this universal password. Using a unique password ensures that if one account is hacked, you will limit the hacker’s ability to access other accounts.
Enable Multifactor Authentication (MFA)
MFA must be always enabled. Even if your password gets intercepted by a hacker, he will still need to enter a randomly generated code or receive an SMS message to log into your account. Many sites use the google authenticator application. This very simple application will help you feel safe.
After adding the MFA to your account on the online trading site, you can also add the MFA to email and social networks. This gives you additional protection to ensure your overall Internet security.
View your login history
It is recommended to occasionally (once a week) check the login history of your trading platform account. If you notice any suspicious or unauthorized login attempts, you can act accordingly by changing the password and running an antivirus that scans your computer for malware. It is also a good idea to contact technical support and explain that you had unauthorized attempts to log in to your account.
Be careful when clicking links and email attachments
People you are trading with can send you files and links. Always make sure your antivirus tool is updated and never open files like .scr or .exe. These files almost always are viruses. Never click suspicious links. It is recommended to conduct periodic full antivirus scans to ensure the security of your computer. You should always be prepared for new viruses and fraud.
Do not work using open access networks
With online trading, you should avoid using Internet cafes, coworking spaces, and other open spaces, since you cannot determine their security. Hackers can monitor Wi-Fi traffic and use various malware tools. For example, keyloggers may steal your personal data by recording each character you type using the keyboard, thus easily revealing your passwords and usernames to intruders.
Bookmark your trading platform website
Always check your browser address bar and be sure you are visiting the authentic website. Scammers can create fake websites that are very similar. These sites exist in order to run the so-called phishing attacks. Scammers can also register fake domains that may have only minor differences with the real one. Please bookmark your website to be sure that you are on the original site. Never click on paid links\sites in Google search results to access your trading platform.
Use only proven software
Installing and using pirated (illegal) software puts you at risk of Trojans, adware and other attacks and viruses. Browser add-ons that are not 100% trusted should also not be used as this increases the risk of an attack and can potentially lead to losing confidential login information. Specific malware designed for online traders can be installed without your concern using illegal software.
Be careful with email messages
Pay attention to the email address of each letter you receive. When you make a request to the support service or when you receive any correspondence via email, check the sender’s address. Online scammers often try to fool you making their messages to look like they came from an official account. You should only accept and reply to emails received from the official site.
Moreover, check mail signatures under messages. Scammers will try to copy all points of the original message and try to mislead you and make believe that this is an official correspondence. Remember that staff members do not need your password and they will never ask for it.
In case you have any doubts or questions, do immediately contact customer support. You can do this by email on via messengers or by phone. Describe in detail your situation. As in the points above, administrators do not need your account password and will never ask for it.