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How sending one quick email becomes a dangerous game

In a technology-based world, exchanging information has become normal and often necessary, but many people have found that with this convenience comes the dangers of hacking and identity fraud. For this reason, we discourage sending important financial documents via email and highly encourage you to use a secure portal instead (see more information below). Although we communicate with our clients through email quite frequently, we will never ask you to send important information over email. Here’s why…

1) An email passes through many servers and networks on the way to its destination.

You might not know it, but an email’s journey can leave you particularly vulnerable to hackers trying to access personal information. Once an email leaves your inbox, it travels to many different file servers before it gets to the receiver of the email. Anyone of those servers can be compromised on this journey, as these hackers are primed and ready to snare these details.

2) Password protecting or “zipping” a document doesn’t always protect you.

Unless you have an incredibly complex and long password, a password-protected file can easily be breached by brute-force attacks from hackers (i.e. bots can send multiple attempts per second at guessing your password).The same applies to “zipping” a file. Once a hacker has your email, they will continue working to hack into it until they finally succeed.

3) Sending financial information can lead to identity theft or fraud.

It’s many people’s worst nightmare— having someone steal their identity or hard-earned money as a result of sending sensitive information via email. Many “fraudsters” will do this simply by asking for money or spam emails. Even worse, if a victim clicks a link, it could mean inadvertently installing a virus, malware, or spyware on your computer. This would then allow them to monitor all your activity on your computer.

Bottom line: if you think that the information you’re sending could jeopardize your identity, don’t send it. This information might include but is not limited to:
• Social security numbers
• Driver’s license numbers
• Health insurance information and other sensitive health information
• Bank account numbers or statements
• Passwords or authentication credentials
• Credit card or debit card numbers
• State-issued ID numbers
• Copies of birth certificates

How can I send my documents safely and securely?

The Storen Financial Client Portal is the online filing cabinet where you can upload and access all your documents safely and securely, be it a completed tax return, monthly statement, etc. Click here to learn more about how to set up your Client Portal.


Want to learn more?

Here are a few more resources to help answer your questions…
Sending Financial Information over Email – Smartfile
Keeping Sensitive Data Safe: Don’t Send in Emails – University of Buffalo


Blog by Amy White – Technology Director

Learn more about Amy and the rest of the Storen Financial team here.