Cyber Hygiene

Cyber Hygiene

This post was co-authored by Wealth Advisor Lowell Parker, CFP® and Information Systems Manager Rodney Gonzales.

As banks become increasingly difficult for cybercriminals to hack, high net-worth families are the next logical targets. These criminals are organized, patient, and in some cases, well-funded. Cybercrime is also underreported, and while the court system is catching up with the expansion of laws and penalties for cyber-related crimes, cases remain hard to solve or even prove.

Having your personal information compromised isn’t a matter of “if,” but “when.” It’s less expensive to take preventative measures than it is to investigate and eliminate threats. It’s imperative that you take the right precautions both externally, with your vendors and service providers, as well as internally with your home computers and networked systems. (more…)

We answer the phone when you call. It’s that simple.

I was recently the victim of fraud.  Someone got my credit card number and sold it.  Then someone charged $1,000 worth of groceries to it in Madrid, Spain.  I ran through a range of emotions during this experience, but do you know what the most frustrating thing was?  When I went to report it, to talk to the financial institution involved, it took forever to get to a real person.  I had to remember PIN numbers and wade through “press one for this” and “press two for that.”  It was awful.

This is a perfect example of why we have a person answer the phone here at Merriman.  On the first ring Heather, Richard, and Donna stand ready to answer.  By the third ring Kim, Heather, and Scott (and soon Mischa) are standing by.  If there’s a fourth ring, then everyone’s phone is ringing. (more…)