With the brand New Year upon us, it’s an exciting time to make some resolutions. Taking simple steps to protect your personal and financial information is a great way to start the year. Check out the below information to get you started. Here are five resolutions you can keep!

Resolution #1 – I’ll ask a friend if I am concerned about a message or phone call I receive

Criminals may contact you by telephone, SMS or email in an attempt to trick you into providing personal or financial information. These attempts can look or sound very convincing, and are not always easy to spot, but there are a few things to look out for:

Feeling pressured?

Scammers want to force you to make a decision in a hurry. They might even try to threaten you with further "consequences" over a fake bill or debt.

Not sure who is contacting you?

Trust your gut - if you’re ever unsure about the legitimacy of a phone call, SMS or an email, don’t provide any information. Contact the organisation or company on a number you can find independently (for example, NAB’s contact details are on the back of your card).

Gift cards aren’t currency.

Legitimate organisations like the Australian Tax Office will never ask you to pay an outstanding debt in iTunes or other gift cards.

Just not sure? Pause. Take a breath. Ask someone.

Talk through your concerns and get a second opinion from a family member, friend or colleague – they could help you identify a suspicious request.

You can read more about how to keep yourself safe from phishing messages, or you can watch our video on how to spot a suspicious message.

If you’re concerned about a call, SMS or email from someone claiming to be from NAB, report it to hoax@nab.com.au. You can also call us on 13 22 65 or visit your local branch for assistance.

Resolution #2 - I won’t provide remote access to my computer

A "remote access scam" is when scammers pretend they can assist you with an issue with your computer by persuading you to give them access. They could then potentially search your computer for sensitive information, convince you to log on to your internet banking or pressure you into buying something you don’t need. Here are some things to look out for to spot this scam:

  • An unexpected contact from a caller who claims to be from a technical support service provider, a large telecommunications or computer company. They tell you that your computer is experiencing technical problems or has a virus, and they need to remotely access your computer to fix the problem.
  • They may ask you to buy software or sign up to a service to fix the computer.
  • They may ask for your personal details and your bank or credit card details.
  • The caller is very persistent or impatient.
  • Ensure you read any SMS codes sent to you in full – ones you shouldn’t be sharing will say it’s your “secret code”. Keep them secret!

Don’t be pressured in to providing access to your computer, sensitive details or purchasing something you don’t require.

If you’re worried about your computer, take it to a local IT specialist.

Resolution #3 - I won’t receive or send money at the request of someone I’ve never met in person

Criminals may try to trick people in to becoming “money mules” by having stolen money transferred into your account, which they then ask you to send on – typically by transferring it overseas.

  • Money mule criminals could try to recruit you via email, job-search websites or even through an online relationship.
  • They may offer you payment for moving the money elsewhere (withdrawing and depositing it in another account).
  • A person that you’ve met online may request that you help with a funds transfer – it may be for a business or personal need.

Remember, you’re responsible for the money coming into your account. Don’t allow your bank account to be used to move money for others. Handling money that’s been obtained fraudulently is a crime, even if you weren’t aware it was fraudulently obtained.

If you’ve provided your financial details to someone, or have any concerns please call us on 13 22 65 or contact your local branch for assistance.

For more information visit nab.com.au/security.

Resolution #4: I’ll use a different password for each of my online accounts.

We all have so many online accounts these days: so we understand that it can be difficult keeping track of your passwords.

But if you’re using one or just a few passwords for all your online accounts, make a New Year’s resolution to change this right away.

If a criminal gets hold of your password, the first thing they’ll do is see where else you use it. Don’t make it easy for them.

Use a different password for each of your online accounts.

Check out our tips for choosing strong passwords and managing them securely.

Resolution #5: I’ll make sure my computers, smartphone and tablets have anti-virus software.

Anti-virus software can help keep your computer and mobile devices safe from malicious software, also called malware.

Malware is software that has been created by criminals to reduce the security of your computer.

Malware can cause your computer to stop working correctly, perform tasks without you knowing, or allow other people to access your computer - giving them access to your information and online accounts.

Why not take advantage of this free six month offer of anti-virus software from NAB?

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