October is National Cyber Security Awareness Month, drawing attention to the need for online safety in all arenas, including your members’ accounts. With high-tech criminal activity and identity fraud on the rise, it’s important to be defensive in financial matters today. According to a report by Aite Group, consumers are not as cautious as they should be.

Among the risky behaviors on the rise:

  • 20 percent left their smartphone unlocked when not using it (11 percent in 2014).
  • 18 percent threw papers with account numbers in the trash without shredding them (13 percent in 2014).
  • 14 percent used online banking or shopped the internet without security software or on a public computer (7 percent in 2014).
  • 9 percent made a note of their PIN and kept it with their card (6 percent in 2014).
  • 8 percent responded to emails or calls asking for banking details (5 percent in 2014).

Globally speaking, Aite found that nearly half (47 percent) of American cardholders have experienced card fraud in the past five years, and 17 percent have experienced it multiple times.

“This study confirms that card fraud remains an issue of deep concern for consumers around the globe,” says Andreas Suma, vice president and global lead, fraud and data, ACI Worldwide. “It’s no surprise that there is a direct correlation between fraud and lower consumer trust and card loyalty, including a primary contributor toward ‘back of wallet’ behavior.”

Sullivan says it’s essential for financial institutions to implement and actively maintain effective fraud prevention solutions that address fraud, security, and customer experience needs. Read more on this topic at CU Insight.

For information on Cyber Security Awareness month, visit the website.