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Tips to Protect Your Accounts Against Data Breaches


Data breaches are common in our digital world. Technology makes it easy for fraudsters to access a person’s Personal Identifiable Information (PII) by illegally accessing databases that can be vulnerable to loss, theft, or misappropriation. Legal names, Social Security numbers, email and home addresses, and more, can be used to identify, contact, and defraud a person and/or their financial institution. It is important to be aware of these threats and understand how to protect yourself from them.

SLFCU consistently works to protect our members’ PII, but your vigilance is important, too. Though they're not all-inclusive, here are a few tips you can follow to protect yourself and your data:

  • Beware of phishing and spoofing. Phishing involves a scammer contacting a consumer by email or phone and asking to verify account information. SLFCU will never ask for account information through email. Report suspicious calls and emails to If you have provided personal or account information, call SLFCU immediately.
  • Do not open emails, click on links in emails, or download email attachments you do not recognize or were not expecting.
  • Keep the antivirus software on your devices up to date. Software updates often include security patches that address vulnerabilities that could be exploited in data breaches.
  • Use complex passwords and/or passphrases with letters, numbers, and symbols that would be impossible for others to guess. Ensure you regularly change your passwords and use different ones for each of your accounts. Check your mobile app permissions. When an app asks to access your personal phone data, do not agree to give more information than needed for the app to function.
  • Review your security and privacy settings on your electronic devices such as cellphones, laptops, and even home security cameras. Make sure your computer and phone are locked when not in use.
  • Use encrypted and password-protected Wi-Fi networks, especially when accessing sensitive information. Avoid using public Wi-Fi for tasks that involve sharing personal or financial data. Protect your personal and business card accounts using Card Controls in SLFCU online and mobile banking. You can set up alerts, lock your cards, and more.

Get free resources at, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau website, and two Federal Trade Commission websites, and

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