Member FDICFDIC-Insured - Backed by the full faith and credit of the U.S. Government

Making Your Accounts More Secure

Here are six Cyber Security tips to make your accounts even more secure:

TIP #1 – Multi-Factor authentication and notifications

Enabling login notifications, account notifications, and multi-factor authentication on all of your accounts can greatly reduce the effects of your password getting compromised.

• Turn on Login notifications.

• Enable multi-factor authentication or one-time passcodes on all accounts. is a great resource to check which sites support specific forms of multi-factor authentication.

TIP #2 – Keep software up to date

Always install the latest security software updates for your applications, computers, mobile devices, routers and smart home.

• Turn on Automatic Updates.

• Use web browsers such as Chrome or Firefox that receive frequent, automatic security updates.

• Make sure to keep browser plug-ins (Flash, Java, etc.) up to date.

• Update mobile device operating systems and applications

TIP #3 – Practice good password management

Use a strong mix of characters, and don’t use the same password for multiple sites. Don’t share your password with others, don’t write it down, and definitely don’t write it on a post-it note attached to your monitor.

A password management program can help you to maintain strong unique passwords for all of your accounts. These programs can generate strong passwords for you, enter credentials automatically, and remind you to update your passwords periodically. Some even alert you to when your password might have been compromised or is being sold on the dark web.

TIP #4 – Avoid scams – beware of suspicious emails, texts and phone calls

Email, text and phone scams are a constant threat. Cyber criminals will attempt to trick you into divulging personal information such as your login ID, password, bank and credit card information.

Phishing scams can be carried out by phone, text or through social networking sites – but most commonly by email.

• Be suspicious of any email message or phone call that asks for personal or financial information even if it seems legitimate.

TIP #5 – Install whole home anti-virus protection

Installing a whole home security device like a Bitdefender Box, Norton Core or Cujo AI can help protect all of your devices, including your smart TVs, thermostats, and refrigerators. Also, when you purchase most of these devices it includes antivirus protections for multiple other devices. This way you can have complete home protection as well as device protections.

TIP #6 – Use devices safely

Considering how much we rely on our devices and how susceptible they are to attack, you’ll want to make sure you are protected:

• Lock your device with a PIN or password, and never leave it unprotected in public.

• Only install apps from trusted sources.

• Keep your device’s operating system updated.

• Don’t click on links or attachments from unsolicited emails or texts.

• Avoid transmitting or storing personal information on the device.

• Ensure handheld devices are capable of employing data encryption.

• Backup your data.

• Keep an eye on your bank accounts and management with apps like Alpine Bank’s.

Click here to learn more about protecting yourself and stopping fraud.

About This Author


Ross Bentzler

Ross Bentzler is Executive VP and Information Security Officer for Alpine Bank. Ross has worked in the information technology field for two decades, focusing on information security for 13 years.

More about Ross Bentzler

Allpoint It’s your money after all. Find a surcharge-free ATM