How safe is your money if your bank gets hacked?

The FBI is looking into the reported cyber attack on JPMorgan. Earlier this week, many reports surfaced that one of the worlds largest bank was just one of seven major American banks reportedly hit by hacking attacks.

JPMorgan is saying no accounts were compromised and that no personal data was taken, but would they really tell us the truth? It’s a very disturbing to say the least.

If your credit card information is stolen, you can call the credit card company and explain to them them it wasn’t you making the charges and it’ll be fixed. But if someone steals your bank account you’ve got major problems.

All bank accounts are insured by the FDIC (Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation), but that will only cover you if the bank fails. Your deposit insurance protection does not apply in the case of theft or fraud.

When you deposit your money in the bank, you are giving the bank permission to use it. And trust me, they do. If that bank fails then the FDIC kicks in and hopefully you get your money back. This is not always the case. Just look at Cypress or any other country where their monetary system has collapsed.

Right now, there looks to be more questions than answers when it comes to the recent banks attacks. How many customers data has been stolen? How long did hackers have access to the banks systems?

Most times, a hacker simply needs to access your primary email account to have full access to your life. Online banking and other companies like Paypal will send a lost password to your email account. By requesting a lost password from your banking site, the hacker (who also has full access to your email account) has full access to your accounts.

Whenever possible, use a separate email account for your bank account and personal emails.

And, to protect yourself from identity theft, use these simple Internet safety tips:

1. Never use the same password twice. For instance, your bank password should not be the same as your email password. Use a unique password for each site.

2. Opt for a hard to guess password that does not include any details from your personal life. Never use part of your social security number or name as part of a password. Store your passwords offline on a written form. This will reduce the temptation to use a simple password.

3. Don’t share personal details like your bank account number, social security number and date of birth or even mother’s maiden name.

4. Check your bank account balance weekly. If you notice any suspicious transactions, contact the bank immediately about potential fraud.

5. Devote one primary email address exclusively for bank use. And, then use a separate throw-away email address when signing up for freebies and online forums.

This will reduce the possibility of identity theft from online hackers.

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