We've heard about how mindfulness can help us better self-regulate our emotions and connect with our families, but what about our finances?
Developing financial mindfulness means that you are focused on the present in order to protect your future finances.
This may mean keeping your present day spending on target through a daily limit in order to grow your retirement fund. Being financially mindful also includes learning how to potentially protect you and your loved ones from financial fraud in the future.
According to a recent survey from TD, “Eighty-five percent of Canadians worry that they or their loved ones will be a victim of financial fraud.”
We all have a role in protecting ourselves and our family members from becoming a victim of financial fraud, especially the most vulnerable ones, our elderly parents and our children.
How To Protect Your Finances From Fraud
Here are five tips from TD to help you become more mindful about your personal information in order to protect yourself and your family from financial fraud:
1. Pay attention to your fraud alerts
Banks are increasingly using text messaging to communicate with their customers. For example, TD Fraud Alerts are texts that notify a customer if TD detects suspicious activity made with their TD Access Card on their personal banking accounts.
The customer can reply to the alert with a simple “Y” or “N” to confirm whether they recognize the transaction and TD will unblock or block their TD Access Card accordingly based on the response. TD will never ask a customer to reply to a Fraud Alert text with any personal information or ask customers to click on any links in their reply.
2. Protect your PIN and guard your cheques
The only person who should know your PIN is you – not even your bank knows it. Don't ever give out your PIN, whether in person, over the phone, online or by mail. You should also never leave your cheques unattended and if your chequebook is lost or stolen, call your bank immediately.
3. Don't be fooled by phishing
Exercise caution when receiving unsolicited e-mails containing attachments or asking you to click a link and provide sensitive information. Banks will not ask you to provide personal information, or login information such as usernames, passwords, PINs, security questions and answers, or account numbers, through unsolicited e-mail.
4. Check your statements, online accounts or banking apps regularly
This will alert you to fraudulent transactions more quickly. Money management apps, like the TD MySpend app, can be helpful tools since they help TD customers to be aware of certain types of transactions on eligible TD accounts and credit cards. The TD MySpend app provides notifications of spend transactions in real-time, which helps make it easy for customers to recognize a fraudulent purchase quickly.
5. Verify if it's real
If you receive an unexpected and too-good-to-be-true cheque,chances are it may be fraudulent. It's always important to know who you're doing business with.
Learning to trust our instincts
Fraud schemes can play on our emotions. Have you ever been put on the spot to provide personal information?
I've been in situations many times where I've felt reluctant to give my personal information. In the past, I'd provide it rather than risk feeling embarrassed or appearing paranoid but I've become increasingly protective of my information. And based on TD’s financial fraud tips, it seems I have a good reason too.
Becoming mindful of how to protect ourselves and paying attention to our accounts will help safeguard us against financial fraud, since the key is early detection and prevention.
Are you worried about falling victim to financial fraud?
Disclosure: This post is part of the YummyMummyClub.ca and TD sponsored program. I received compensation as a thank you for my participation. This post reflects my personal opinion about the information provided by the sponsors.