Sassy Alert:The Truth About Changing Your Password Every 90 Days

Holidays are upon us and before you pick out your Halloween Costume and book your winter vacation, answer this question: when was the last time you changed your credit card/debit card passwords? According to Money Queen herself Suze Orman, we should change our passwords every 90 days ,but if you’re a gold medalist in debit-card-swiping, or if you hop on planes like we do around here (#JetSettingGirls), it might be a good idea to pencil-in a few extra days for security updates. Let’s explore if it’s worth the effort!

To Change Or Not To Change, Cha-Ching!

Remembering five or six different passwords is a headache, I get it, but security is top priority. (And please, don’t write them down! Memorize them. It’s the safest way.) Unfortunately, stealing someone’s money or personal information is the not-so-legal day-job of more people than we’d like to acknowledge. This makes you incredibly susceptible to getting caught in a huge financial mess. Let’s be honest, do we want our hard earned money or our reputation in the hands of a criminal? Of course not! So,better be safe than sorry and change all of your neglected passwords, NOW! You’ll thank me someday.

While we’re at it, let’s throw social media into the mix. That data is priceless! Your entire life is poured into your bank account and your social media logs, but they are not as secure as we may have thought.  Keep in mind that thieves can make cards from stolen accounts and Photoshop your images and jeopardize your reputation. So,go grab your tablet or your smartphone and get to work. Online banking makes it easy for you to receive updated account status. Take advantage of that.

And to better convince you, Ungenita told me about her own aggravating experience.Listen and learn. “One day I noticed there were some charges on my account from Walmart. That could not be possible, first of all the charges were out of state and I shop at Target. Haven’t you seen the ads on this site? Girl’s got to be loyal to her brands. I immediately called the bank and found out my number was stolen at the gas station. Hacker shave figured out a way to snag your number from the magnetic strips. EEEHso now I’ve become quite obsessed with changing my password like I change men (I couldn’t resist that…you know I’m on a #ManFREEDiet this week.” You heard it first!

There are many ways to steal someone’s data; we’ve got skimmers, modified card readers and malware on public computers, just to name a few. That’s why setting up mobile alerts for your phone, if your bank provides the feature, can help you to become quickly aware of unusual activity. On the other hand, NEVER do business with unfamiliar online vendors or buy stuff whilst logged into public computers.

Ho, Ho, Ho and a Merry Get-The-Hell-Out-Of-My-Account To You!

According to the Federal Trade Commission, identity theft cost Americans about 2-Billion Dollars (yes I said Billions). Buyers,beware of Identity Theft around the holidays because we’re more “fancy-free”when we spend and can put ourselves in some sticky situations. Throughout the holidays, the risks of getting caught in fraudulent activity skyrocket .

The last thing you want to be worrying about pre-Christmas-caroling is counterfeit charges on your credit card bill or worse, identity theft. The immense amount of wrapped gifts under the tree can partially be to blame. Shopping is at an all-time high towards the end of the year and the option to buy online or pick-up in store can be more harmful than helpful.

Customers increasingly take retailers up on the option, since they don’t have to pay for shipping or spend time shopping at a specific location. Unfortunately, thieves can take advantage of the offering by picking up fake orders right after placing them and minimizing their chances of getting caught.

So,how do you stay a Super Secured Snow-Queen this Holiday Season ? Take these simple precautionary steps:

1.Don’t click on any suspicious emails or URLs that pop up in your inbox

2.Use different passwords across the board for all your accounts

3. Shred importantfinancial documents

4.Lock your smartphones

5.Frequently clear your computer cache

6.Refrain from responding to unsolicited requests for bank information

7.Monitor your bank statements regularly

8.Contact your issuer immediately if fraudulent charges appear

To being Pretty, Paid & Safe!