At Phoenix Group, we are committed to ensuring that we are accountable and transparent when processing your personal data. We believe in clear and open communication with all our customers, shareholders, investors and colleagues. Our Privacy Hub is the window to understanding why we ask for your data, how we use the data you share, how we collect it, what rights you have over it and how we keep it safe across all our products and services.
Our Privacy Notices explain when and why we collect personal information about our customers, how we use it, the conditions under which we may share it with others and how we keep it secure. It also explains how you can obtain details of the information we hold about you, and the choices you have about how we use that information.
While we do everything in our power to keep your data secure, there are also some simple steps you can take to protect yourself online.
Setting a strong password for each of your online accounts is the most important thing you can do to protect your information. Below are some tips for creating a strong password:
Where possible, try to set up two factor authentication on your online accounts. Once you've logged in using your username and password, two factor authentication is an additional step that requires you to further verify your identity. Common forms of two factor authentication include entering a code you receive by text or answering a security question.
Social media tips
Social media is a great way for us to connect with others, but it's important to remember that any information you put on social media is public and could be accessed by people with malicious intent.
Avoid posting any information on social media that may be used to verify your identity such as your full date of birth address, drivers licence, passport or credit card details. It's also best not to share your location on social media, particularly if you're confirming you will be away from home for an extended period of time. Beware that when you post photos your location is often tagged, and this metadata can often be accessed on the social media platform
You should regularly check the data privacy settings on social media platforms as they are updated regularly.
There is also an increasing number of scams appearing across social media channels. Some common tips for avoiding scams include questioning whether an offer looks too good to be true, inspecting links and landing pages for misspellings and contact the company/person separately if you are in any doubt.
Unfortunately scams now come in many forms and it's important to stay alert when you're online. Social media scams, phishing emails and SMiShing texts are just a few scam variations.
For phishing and SMiShing scams, fraudsters will often pose as a legitimate person or company to attempt to trick you into providing personal details. To spot one of these messages, consider the following:
If in doubt, do not click on any links or open any attachments. To verify whether the message is legitimate, contact the company separately. Do not reply to the message or use contact details contained in the body of the message.
For more information on helping you stay safe online, view our Digital Essentials guides. Our Phoenix Life Customer Centre also holds more information on online security and protecting yourself from fraud and scams.
Managing your online reputation
Any information you enter on social networking websites, accounts, or any other website could potentially be up for grabs in the event of a data breach. In general, the information you put online contributes to your online reputation, which can impact your chances of securing employment, getting into your college of choice, and create many problems if the information is unfavourable.
Monitoring your online reputation can also help you pick up on sensitive information that shouldn't be publicly available so you can take action to have it removed. Search all variations of your name, avoiding searching for personal identification numbers (such as your driver's licence number or National Insurance number), and asking website owners to remove this information if you find it published. You should also check sites you frequently visit, as well as social networking websites, so that you can clean up your profiles if necessary.
Managing your digital footprint
Just like evaluating your online reputation, taking stock of your digital footprint involves investigating your online presence, including locating old accounts that you no longer use. With your digital information scattered everywhere over the course of a lifetime, it’s important to think about what valuable information you have where. For example, how many web sites are storing your credit card information? How many have up-to-date card numbers and expiration dates? Where do you have important documents, files and videos across the web?
You can start by making a list and noting the types of sensitive data associated with each site. If there are sites you no longer use, you might want to consider deleting your account profiles.