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How you can protect yourself

Review the Ameriprise Financial Online Security Guarantee for steps to take to help ensure your online security. When visiting or other sites in general, keep in mind the best practices and behaviors outlined below.


Practice protective behaviors

Create strong passwords

  • Include numbers, symbols and special characters and use longer passwords to make them harder to crack.

  • Change your passwords regularly and don’t use the same password more than once.

  • Get creative. Think of a memorable phrase and use the first letter of each word as your password, converting some letters into numbers or symbols that resemble letters.

  • Don't use the same password for multiple online accounts.

  • Don't use your personal information, your login name, or adjacent keys on the keyboard as passwords.

  • Don’t share your password and don’t use the “remember my password” option on any computer that is not used solely by you.

  • Avoid common words. Some hackers use programs that try every word in the dictionary.

  • Remember that we will never ask you to provide your password over the phone or through email. Be wary of anyone who does.

Be attentive when logging in and out of your accounts

  • Check to make sure the URL address of the page begins with “https” instead of just “http.” The “s” indicates it is a secure page.

  • Look for an image of a closed padlock near the URL address in your browser. You can click on the padlock to confirm the identity of the site you are visiting.

  • Always log out and close your browser window or mobile application after signing out.

Use Message Center to communicate securely with your advisor

Message Center is a secure email program that offers built-in security and privacy features to allow you and your financial advisor and members of his/her staff to exchange sensitive information.

Message Center is available to clients who are registered for the secure site on

Be smart when surfing the Web

  • Go to websites directly. The safest way to get to any site is to type the URL address into your browser directly. You can then bookmark it for quicker access on future visits.

  • Before clicking on links (in emails, pop-ups, downloads, etc.), use the ‘hover’ test: Roll over the link with your mouse to display the URL. If the URL looks suspicious, do not click on it.

  • Use the “Remember my User ID” feature (but never from a public or shared computer). This feature lets your computer remember your ID, so when you return to the site to log in again, your User ID will automatically display in the log in box. A fake site will not be able to display your User ID.

Also see:


Get the right equipment and tools and keep them updated

Use the most current version of a modern browser

  • The most current version will have the strongest security measures in place.

  • Older versions are not always supported and are more prone to security problems.

Install security software that includes anti-spyware, antivirus and firewall features

  • Choose one that can protect you against all types of malware.

  • Set it to scan on a regular basis – at least once a week – and every time you start your computer, if possible.

  • Delete any software programs that your antivirus software detects that you don’t want on your computer.

Use a backup service or drive to protect your data

  • Backup your personal files regularly to an offline (hard drive/DVD) or offsite (backup service) destination.


Recognize potential threats


Software that is installed on your computing device without your consent to monitor the way you use your computing device. It can be used to record keystrokes, meaning the software could record your usernames and passwords.

Clues that your computing device may be infected with spyware include:

  • Onslaught of pop-up ads

  • Your browser taking you to sites you did not enter in the address box

  • A change to your Internet home page that you did not make

  • New toolbars

  • New icons in your browser window

  • Keys that don't work properly

  • Random error messages

  • Slow performance when opening programs or saving files

Email fraud

Email fraud – or phishing – refers to phony emails that appear to be from well-known companies and are designed to deceive you into providing personal, financial or account information – such as account user names, passwords, credit card information and Social Security numbers.

For tips on how to spot and report email fraud, see About email fraud.


Understand risks when providing personal information to aggregators

Information aggregator services or software enable users to see financial information from multiple accounts and companies in one single place. To use an aggregator, you will be asked to provide required account access information such as a website user name and password and/or account number. Examples include: CashEdge, Yodlee, and Quicken.

The decision to use an aggregator service should only be made after carefully reading the individual service's Terms and Conditions, and fully understanding the risks of providing your user ID and password information. If you choose to share your user ID and password with an aggregator, we will deem that entity to be your authorized agent(s) for accessing the products and services on the site. By using an aggregator, you agree to be solely responsible for the activities your aggregator service may conduct, even if those activities may exceed the scope of your agreement with them.


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