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5 Tips to Securing Your Finances While In College

mediumpigCollege is typically the first time that young people get a real taste of adult life. For many, that means taking on a higher level of responsibility in different areas. Financial responsibility is one important lesson to be learned during this time. Keeping track of cards and cash, maintaining bank accounts, and protecting personal data are all major components of being smart when it comes to finances.

Lock Down Info on Laptops

Laptops are one of the most essential tools for any student today. While their primary purpose may be school related, they can also be an integral part of one’s personal life, as the Internet is used for so many different things. Managing bank accounts online is very common, but it is crucial to protect the information stored on sites at all times. Laptop theft is always a concern, especially when taking it to different places like the college library, to class, or to coffee shops and cafes. Never allow passwords to be auto-saved for banking websites so that thieves cannot access an account.

Keep Smartphones Safe

Smartphones are another item that people tend to carry with them frequently. In fact, most people do not leave home without their phone today. Using the Internet with a web browser on a smartphone provides a convenient way to keep tabs on accounts, but it also leaves personal info vulnerable. College students should avoid using public wireless networks that are not secure for data transmission. Turn on password security so that not just anyone can pick up the phone and use it.

Check In With Checking and Savings Accounts

Online banking has made it easier than ever for people to access their accounts and check transactions and balances quickly. Frequent monitoring of an account is a great way to catch any suspicious activity or fraudulent charges right away. Make it a point to log into accounts often and check up on the activity to ensure that it is all correct.

Many credit and debit cards/bank accounts offer customers to set up free alerts which will be sent via email. The alerts will let customers know when transactions have been made, or when suspicious activity has been detected on an account.

Change Passwords Often

Even when a person thinks that have a really strong password, there is always the risk that someone else can figure it out fairly quickly. It is important to change up passwords frequently. Aim for a combination of letters, numbers, and special characters, when possible.

Leave Credit Cards at Home

Most people carry their debit and credit cards around in their wallets, but this puts the cards at a high risk of being lost or stolen. Once a credit card is stolen, a thief can wrack up charges in a matter of minutes. It can cause a big headache at best, and a loss of funds at worst.

Unless a college student is heading out with the intent of using a card to make purchases, it would be best to simply leave it at home or in the dorm in a safe, hidden spot. Hide cards away in a drawer or a secure safe with a lock when they are not needed. Just be sure to check up on them from time to time.

Financial responsibility is a lesson that cannot come too soon for young adults. Keep finances safe and secure by taking the right preventative steps and keeping tabs on accounts, cards, and personal electronic equipment. Being smart with bank accounts, credit cards, and debit cards is the best way for a college student to protect their money.

About the Author:

Today’s guest article comes from Ryan Ayers. He is a writer who creates informative articles in relation to education. In this article, he offers financial security tips to students and aims to encourage further study with an NJIT Online Masters of Computer Science.

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One Response to “5 Tips to Securing Your Finances While In College”

  1. Andrew says:

    Great article! I all too often see people at my college just leave their valuables lying on a desk while they wonder off in the library, its too easy for a thief to walk up and help them self.

    Also one of the big issues I see people take for granted is their pins on their credit/debit cards, having worked in banks I have seen just how common it is for people to know their friends/families pin numbers. It is safest to keep those to yourself and avoid any potential problems.

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