It’s National Computer Security Day on the 30th November and, with online security incidents on the rise, it’s a timely reminder for all of us to be on our guard. Here are a few security tips to help you stay safe online, and some reassurance about what we’re doing to safeguard the information you share with us.
Cyber security incidents can cover a wide range of scams, schemes and fraud. Put simply it’s any occasion when individuals will target computers and data for some form of gain – usually financial. Here are some of the common attacks that happen in Aotearoa:
Phishing - where an attacker tries to trick you into revealing information by impersonating someone from a legitimate source. For example, someone may call claiming they’re from your bank and they need your password. 45% of cyber-attacks in the first quarter of 2021 in NZ were from phishing*.
Scams - online schemes designed with the aim of stealing money from a person. An example would be someone contacting you out of the blue with an ‘amazing’ investment offer or wanting you to send money so a parcel can clear customs and be sent on to you. 31.5% of cyber-attacks on Kiwis in the first quarter of 2021 were scams*.
Unauthorised access - a ploy to gain access to a computer system illegally. This may be a threat to your computer at work. These made up 8.7% of all cyber-attacks in the first quarter of 2021*.
If you’re concerned you’ve been affected by any online incident, please report it to Netsafe. Netsafe is a free, confidential and independent service that can help with harmful online content, scams and security issues.
Tips to prevent online fraud and scams
Keep your devices, your software and your apps up-to-date - don’t ignore updates, install them as soon as possible. They’re not just about adding new features, they’re also about fixing vulnerabilities in a device or an app that attackers could find and use to gain access to your system.
Choose unique passwords – try to include numbers, symbols and both upper and lowercase letters. Never use personal information such as your name, birthday, physical or email address and always use a different password for each account.
Use two-factor authentication – this is where you can opt to have a code sent or generated on your device that can be used to validate who you are, every time you log in.
Back up your data – by copying it to another, separate location. This will help you recover quicker if your data is lost or stolen. For help with this, and other useful tips, take a look at our article about protecting your digital data.
Install antivirus software and scan for viruses regularly – antivirus software can help you detect and remove malware — viruses — from your computer system. Limit the personal information you give out online – don’t share your address on social media or photos of sensitive documents like passports, driver licence and bank details. The general rule is be careful and don’t give away too much unless you know who’s asking for it and why. Be vigilant and be watchful – has someone contacted you unexpectedly? Have they promised you something? Have they asked you to do something? Staying alert will help you avoid being the target of scammers. And the old expression “If something is too good to be true, it probably is” still applies today.
What we’re doing to keep your information safe.
At AA Insurance we pride ourselves on earning and keeping our customers’ trust. And that doesn’t just apply to the products and services we offer. The information we hold about your home, your car and your possessions is secure personal data that we treat mindfully and protect carefully.
We have strict internal policies and processes over what customer information can and cannot be shared with our own people as well as with suppliers.
We have a Privacy Officer who advises on the collection and use of customer data and builds awareness of customer privacy so that we can continuously improve.
If you have an insurance policy with us, any credit card data is encrypted in our systems and in transferral between systems.
We would never ask for credit card details over our Digital service channels (email, live chat, WhatsApp or Facebook).
The internet has given us unbelievable freedoms and access to information like never before. It’s something to be celebrated, used for good and not feared. We just need to be mindful, act carefully and stay safe online.
*Source of statistics: certnz Quarterly Report: Data Landscape 2021 1 Jan – 31 March
Now’s a great time to review your insurance. We recommend checking your details are up to date and ensuring the policy and cover you’ve chosen is right for you and your insurance needs.
If you have any questions about your insurance, need to update your AA Insurance policies or would like a quote, don’t hesitate to contact us. We’re open from 8am to 8pm weekdays and from 8am to 6pm weekends and public holidays.
This blog provides general information only and is not intended to be a recommendation or personalised financial advice. Excesses, terms, conditions, limits and exclusions apply to AA Insurance Limited’s policies. Please check the policy wording for details of cover. The provision of cover is subject to the underwriting criteria that apply at the time.