Don’t Let Yourself Be Financially April Fooled – Wealth Protection | Canny Group
Once upon a time I was a fool…
Before going in to some scams that are out there at the moment and potential ways to protect yourself, I thought I’d go through an instance where I was a fool, through no fault of my own! As a financial planner, or advisor, it’s important to dictate to clients what we do in an easy to understand manner. It comes down to the 30 second elevator spiel. I was dealing with a client on their insurances and enquired as to what they were doing with the rest of their day, and they said they were going to see a financial planner.
I was a little taken aback. When I delved deeper, they have only known me as someone that dealt with insurances for them and their friends in the past, and had no idea that as a Financial Planner, or Certified Financial Planner, there was a whole range of advisory services that I could provide them with assistance on. It made me wonder how many of my current clients knew what exactly it was that I could do for them, and when was a good time to contact me, when something changed in their lives that would help.
What does a Financial Advisory Services business do + what areas can they provide advice in?
Typically, a Financial Advisory Firm can provide you with advice around your financial goals. The thing is, you might not know what these goals are, or the scope of them, prior to talking with a Financial Planner.
A list of some of the areas that we can provide advice in are:
- Retirement Planning
- Advice in relation to Superannuation
- Estate Planning
- Investment Management
- Wealth Protection (Insurance)
- Tax Planning
As you can see from the above list, it’s not exhaustive and each of those sub-categories can be broken down even further. The financial planning process is not limited by any stretch of the imagination. Financial plans can be tailored for all ages, and all potential areas of advice. They’re a good tool to monitor progress and ensure that you remain on track to achieve what you initially set out to. Seeking financial advice from financial professionals is one way that you can ensure that you are putting your best foot forward.
Money Smart has a page that is dedicated to helping your choose a financial advisor, or knowing what to ask for to help your decision making process.
Current Scams In The Market Place
There are so many different scams that are hitting all kinds of people these days, it makes us all very untrusting. It used to seem that it was merely the elderly that were attacked, and mostly on the landline telephone, but these days most of the scams are targeted to mobile phones and email addresses.
Promises of multi-million dollar inheritances, incorrect login attempts to your only banking, you owing the tax department money with a Sheriff ready to kick down your door, or to a very common one that either someone has tried to log in to your PayPal account or you need to update your PayPal details. A lot of these emails or text messages will prompt you to go to a link in the message directly, for you to initially login and then update your details. The trick here is that the website they direct you to is not the official website, meaning you enter in your details, they’ll then enter them into the correct website and you’ll be none the wise. In some cases, you’ll enter them correct, you’ll get taken to an error page, and then they take you to the correct page so you login in the second time without any issues.
Another big scam at the moment, with the ever rising popularity of cryptocurrency, are the blackmail emails from people that say they’ve caught you doing something you shouldn’t, or have your passwords, and for them to release them back to you, you have to send them a fraction of a bitcoin. The truth is, these people have your passwords potentially as your email address has been hacked or leaked in a hacking attempt in the past. I know, for example, that one of my email addresses that I used to register to LinkedIn was released in one of their hacks a few years ago and dropbox was another one.
You can check here if your details have been hacked in the past by typing in your e-mail address.
How to prevent some of these scams?
One of the easiest ways to prevent yourself being scammed is some of the only bank and other websites that require logins and passwords and deal with money transfer is 2FA, or two-factor authentication. This means that you’ll login with a password, but then also a randomly generated code that expires every 30 to 60 seconds. These codes can be generated by a variety of different apps or sites. I know that Google has one, which is phone specific, and there is an app called Authy which can be installed on a desktop or phone as well. You just link these accounts (if allowable) to the apps, which means that without the randomly generated code, no one can log in to your account fully, even if they have your password. It just adds an important second layer of security to how you operate. I know that I personally, bank with Bendigo Bank and they have an app that provides a special code when adding new payees or logging in, or on every payment made if you want!
Another important thing to remember is that if you get one of these emails or text messages, never click on their provided link in their contact method to you. Also, go directly to the website that you have bookmarked or saved in your phone or on your computer. This way the chances of your being re-directed to a hoax site is lessened dramatically.
Always remember the age of adage, if it sounds too good to be true, it usually is!
Canny Advisory + Not Being An April Fool
Get in touch with us today if you feel that you’ve been scammed, or if you’d like to make a time to organise a review of your financial situation, so we can start identifying your goals and get your on the path to financial success, safely and surely.
Steve Reynolds – Certified Financial Planner