31 days of security

October is National cyber security awareness month and because accounting and security go hand in hand, I’m going to be posting every day for the month of October a cybersecurity tip.

The first tip is actually based on a 2004 FBI tip on Identity Theft:


14 years ago the FBI recommended the following:


  • Order a copy of your credit report each year from one of the national credit bureaus and review it closely for any questionable entries;
  • Shred or cut up all credit card receipts and old bank statements and bills before throwing them away;
  • Close all unused credit card or bank accounts;
  • Remove your name from mailing lists for pre-approved credit lines and telemarketers;
  • Keep your PIN number hidden when you use an ATM or public telephone;
  • Contact your creditor or service provider if you notice odd charges or if expected bills don’t arrive;
  • Update your computer virus software, use a secure browser, and install a firewall program

And 14 years later about all I can say is that I’ve not found a good way to remove your name and phone number from telemarketer lists.  I’d add one suggestion to this list, sign up for Informed Delivery by the post office.  This sends you an email on a daily basis indicating what mail is expected.  I also have a camera at my door to watch for “Porch Pirates”, folks who steal packages off your front door.  Bottom line be aware of what transactions post to your accounts and review them on a regular basis.