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Protecting Your Wealth in the Age of Cyber Attacks
At Wealth Architects, there are few things more important to us than ensuring the financial information of all our clients is safe and secure.
In the context of the recent cyberattack on Optus, this mission has never been more important to our team at Wealth Architects.
Up to 9.8 million Australian residents could have had their data stolen as a result of the breach, with 2.8 million people severely impacted, according to Optus. The exposed records revealed 14,900 valid Medicare numbers and 10,000 users with highly sensitive personal information like passport numbers.
And when we consider the broader statistics in this space, it is a reality that businesses and individuals alike ensure we incorporate strong cybersecurity habits into our daily routines and processes.
This is particularly true for financial organisations – such as Wealth Architects – and for people who engage with them.
According to Verizon, 10 per cent of all cyber-attacks are financial in nature, whilst Accenture reports that in 2018, the financial services industry incurred the most cybercrime expenses with $18.3 million.
At Wealth Architects, we ensure that all of our systems and users are using Two-Factor Authentication to help ensure our systems cannot be accessed by would-be hackers, as well as only dealing with the most secure and trusted institutions, who themselves have very stringent security.
So, what can you do to protect yourself from the cybercrime threat better?
With the rise in cyber attacks, it’s more important than ever to take steps to protect your wealth. Here are three practical tips to help you safeguard your finances against hackers and cybercriminals.
1. Use a Secure Password Manager
One of the best ways to protect your online accounts is to use a secure password manager. This will help you create strong, unique passwords for your different accounts and keep them all stored in one safe place. Many password managers also have additional features like two-factor authentication and fraud monitoring, which can further bolster your security.
2. Be Wary of Phishing Scams
Phishing scams are a common type of cyber attack where criminals pose as a legitimate company or individual to trick you into giving them sensitive information. Be on the lookout for red flags like unexpected requests for personal information or unforeseen attachments in emails. If something looks suspicious, don’t hesitate to contact the supposed sender directly to verify their identity before responding.
3. Keep Your Software Up-to-Date
One of the simplest things you can do to prevent hackers from gaining access to your devices is to ensure that your software is always up-to-date. This includes your operating system, web browser, plugins, and any other applications you have installed on your computer. Hackers are constantly finding new ways to exploit vulnerabilities in software, so it’s important to install updates as soon as they become available to patch any holes that could be used.
By following these three simple tips, you can help protect yourself from becoming a victim of a cyber attack.
If you were implicated in the Optus breach, you should head HERE for the latest from Optus.
Remember to use a secure password manager, be wary of phishing scams, and keep your software up-to-date.
These precautions will go a long way in safeguarding your finances against hackers and cybercriminals.
And remember, when dealing with Wealth Architects, we will never ask you to send personal information via email or text!
If you’re looking for a financial adviser who thinks about the whole picture – including cybersecurity – why not reach out and have a chat with us today?
We take your security and your financial future incredibly seriously.
Contact us to find out more about how we can help you achieve your financial goals.
Disclaimer: The content of this article is general in nature and is presented for informative purposes. It is not intended to constitute financial advice, whether general or personal nor is it intended to imply any recommendation or opinion about a financial product. It does not take into consideration your personal situation and may not be relevant to circumstances. Before taking any action, consider your own particular circumstances and seek professional advice. This content is protected by copyright laws and various other intellectual property laws. It is not to be modified, reproduced or republished without prior written consent.
Wealth Architects operate from the following locations:
Wealth Architects provide quality trusted financial advice to over 1,500 clients, nationally. Regardless of what stage in life you are at, our qualified and experienced Financial Planners are able to provide you with advice and guidance to help you achieve your goals. We ensure we take the time to listen to you to understand what’s important in your life. Every individual is different, which requires a plan and strategy that is uniquely designed to suit you. This is how the name Wealth Architects was born. With decades of combined experience our approach is holistic, ethical and thorough. We leave no stone unturned in our process and we sweat the small things, so you don’t have to.
Who we help:
A Wealth Architects Adviser can ensure you are extracting sufficient funds from your business into your personal life. This will ensure your hard work is achieving your personal goals – not just your business objectives.
If you are looking for strategies to increase your net wealth, Wealth Architects advisers are experts in accelerating your financial position via proven strategies.
Having a road map before you decide to retire is extremely important. Ensuring your ducks are in a row will put you in the best position to ensure you have sufficient capital when you decide to retire. capital when you decide to retire.
Wealth Architects advisers will ensure your assets are well balanced & structured right for your ongoing income stream.
How we can assist:
Strategy Analysis – Everything we do boils down to giving you the highest probability of achieving the life that you want to live. That’s why we spend a lot of time researching, analysing and preparing financial projections before we put pen to paper.
Cashflow & Budgeting – Cashflow is the lifeblood of any financial plan and we use a very simple structure to maximise your ability to save.
Debt Management – There is good debt and bad debt. We work to accelerate the repayment of bad debt and use good debt where it’s appropriate to increase the probability of achieving your goals.
Tax Planning – Tax is inevitable; however, it can be reduced by effectively structuring your assets and income.
Investment Management – We are unbiased to property, shares or even cash in the bank. All have their place, but what we care about is implementing an investment strategy that you understand, are comfortable with and is aligned with your goals.
Superannuation – It’s generally the most tax effective vehicle to store and accumulate your wealth, and hence it is a fundamental part of our strategy. Choosing the right fund is not just about fees and performance, it’s about understanding your objectives and how much control you would like.
Retirement Planning – Retirement is a significant financial milestone and getting clarity around your retirement goals is just as important as getting the strategy right. In this process we will answer 3 simple questions: How much money do you need? Where will your money come from? How long will this last?
Planning for the Unexpected – Things don’t always go according to plan and when they don’t, it pays to have a safety net. We put a protection strategy in place that you can depend on in the event you, your spouse or your key staff are unable to work due to injury, illness or death.
Estate Planning – It’s important to ensure that your wealth is transferred effectively and in accordance with your wishes, and not anyone else’s. It’s also important that you have someone you trust to make decisions for you if you can’t make them yourself.
Social Security – You have paid tax your whole life, so we work hard to review and maximise your entitlements with Centrelink.
Aged Care Strategies – Planning the move into aged care can be stressful whether it’s for you or your family members. We can minimise this stress by helping you make informed decisions based on sound advice.
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Planning for your later years can be a daunting task, especially when it comes to deciphering the differences between retirement living, aged care, and the in-between options.
Recently, the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority (APRA) carried out its annual performance assessment on superannuation products. The results disclosed that certain funds are significantly underperforming.
End of Financial Year (EOFY) is a pivotal time for Australians to reassess their finances and look for opportunities to maximise their financial security. With key changes in superannuation laws and the indexation of the Total Super Balance (TSB) cap to $1.9 million, there are unique opportunities and challenges ahead. Let Wealth Architects guide you through these complexities with personalised financial advice designed to optimise your financial future.