If someone told you not to insure your house, you’d think they were insane. That holds your whole life. If someone said not to bother insuring you vehicle, you’d snort in derision. You need protection from other drivers. If someone asked you if your firm of estate planning lawyers sends client’s personal credit card information to others by email, you’d say absolutely not, it is not safe. If someone told you they had their identity stolen and their credit cards maxed out, you would hope it would never happen to you or your company. What a nightmare. Can you imagine?
And yet – law firms are still sending complete credit card information in emails – unsecured emails that anyone could hack into. How safe is that? Think about that for a minute. All of your personal or law firm’s credit card information, including the security code, in an email anyone could intercept. Would you want anyone to see your personal, or law firm credit card information? Would you want anyone else using it? Chances are, the answer is a resounding “No.” So why is this private information being sent via email?
It does not matter how trustworthy the person or company you’re emailing this sensitive information is. Credit card information in emails is risky, dangerous and leaves you and your firm wide open for phishing scams, identity theft, and a whole host of other criminal behaviors. Never, ever email the complete card information. It may seem outdated these days, but pick up the phone!
We never want to see you in a bind with purloined credit card information. If you have sent anyone credit card information in an email, wipe out the email you sent the information in permanently, by holding down the Shift key while pressing Del. This ensures an item cannot be recovered, as it bypasses the Deleted Items folder in Outlook. It also works with folders. There are other methods, and they may be researched online.
Lori McDonald has been managing the accounting department for The American Academy of Estate Planning Attorneys since 2006.
American Academy of Estate Planning Attorneys, Inc.
9444 Balboa Avenue, Suite 300
San Diego, California 92123
Phone: (800) 846-1555