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Is your 401(k) safe from cyber theft?

Posted by Ann Fitz | Jun 29, 2022 | 0 Comments

401(k)s are more vulnerable to cyber theft than ever, as cases of cyber crimes against these accounts continue to occur in increasing numbers. This may have a significant impact on any retirement accounts you have. Fortunately, there are ways of protecting your accounts in Florida.

Why are 401(k)s so vulnerable to cyber theft now?

With people working remotely more often than before, their retirement accounts may be more vulnerable than they once were. Home offices are less likely to be equipped with the most updated security features.

Every time you connect to a network that isn't secure, such as using the Wi-Fi at local businesses, there is the potential of putting your accounts at risk. This even includes seemingly innocuous tasks like checking in on your 401(k), logging into a social media account, or checking your email.

Cyber theft of 401(k)s is a more serious threat than it once was because hackers are working harder than ever, using increasingly sophisticated methods. And cyber criminals tend to target the accounts of those who are most vulnerable – and those who will bring these cyber thieves the highest returns for their efforts.

With traditional savings accounts, the federal government provides protection over as much as $250,000. When a credit card is stolen and someone uses it, you only have to worry about covering the first of the thief's shopping spree. Unfortunately, there are no such guarantees for your 401(k) accounts.

This makes it a constant race to keep up with cybercriminals. The data and assets that participants have invested in their 401(k)s will continue to be at risk until improvements are put into place. Better legal and technical security is needed so that participants can invest with confidence.

Lawsuits abound with cyber crimes related to 401(k)s. The participant will likely file a lawsuit against the employer, the plan fiduciaries, and the record-keeper – virtually no one is safe. In addition, the different parties end up trying to lay the blame on one another. No one wants to accept responsibility, and in this still-developing landscape of crime, it's not always clear who failed at what job when it happens.

About the Author

Ann Fitz

Attorney Ann Fitz Attorney Ann Fitz has 20 years of experience as a federal criminal attorney and appellate practice attorney.  She began her career as a prosecutor in 2003 and started her own federal criminal defense practice in 2007.  She is devoted to protecting the rights of the accused in f...


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