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Congrats on your nuptials! We have a few tips for keeping your Big Day secure.
Planning a wedding is one of the most exciting moments in your life, but it can also be one of the most stressful! Many couples spend at least several thousand dollars, juggle multiple online services, and handle dozens of people’s contact information. Even simple courthouse weddings can often involve transmitting sensitive data – and then there’s the honeymoon!
Put down the car keys – there is no need to elope! With a few simple security measures, you can ensure your perfect day goes smoothly. We’re here to help – with keeping your information safe, at least. Dealing with unruly family members and learning how to dance, well, that’s outside our scope!
A password shouldn’t be your “something borrowed”
When many couples plan a wedding today, they might open several new accounts from joint bank accounts to a wedding website. Although you trust your betrothed with your heart, it is best not to share passwords. This isn’t a knock against them – each time you text, email, or otherwise share a password between multiple people, it could leave crumbs a prying cybercriminal can put together.
Instead, have each person create their own username and password for shared accounts. If you must share passwords, quality password managers allow you to share passwords through encrypted channels with other trusted people. Oh yeah, we really recommend you use a password manager, even if they are not a perfect solution. And enable multi-factor authentication on any account that permits it because it adds a whole other wall of security.
And if you need a refresher on what makes a “till death do us part” password, generate one that is:
- Something complex
- Something long
- Something unique
- Something strong
So…not your maiden name! We got a whole lot of tips for crafting superb passwords.
Verify your vendors
Especially if you are planning your wedding yourselves, you will be dealing with tons of vendors: venues, caterers, DJs, photographers, videographers, gourmet s’more specialists, bagpipers, photo booth experts…the list is endless. But you need to verify everyone you hire before you sign their contracts or submit any payments.
How? Read multiple reviews of each vendor. Check to see that the reviews seem legitimate, i.e., not written by the vendor. Do star ratings match up with what the reviews say? Sometimes a vendor might offer cash or discounts for high ratings. If the vendor seems like they are just starting out, proceed with extreme caution – try to make contact in various ways (email, phone, and in person) before sending them any money (and only after you both sign a thorough contract).
If a price seems too good to be true, listen to that instinct. Never pay anyone before both parties sign a contract that lays out what goods and services the vendor will provide for a specified cost. Finally, remember that you need to factor tips for all your vendors into your final wedding budget!
Be choosy with your online services
Treat you and your future spouse’s personal information like cash! This includes Social Security numbers and bank account data, of course, but also dates of birth, mailing addresses, and contact info. Before signing up for any online services related to your wedding (such as a wedding website hosting service), read reviews and try to get a sense of what they do with your data. If you aren’t comfortable with sharing your personal information with a service, don’t do it!
Keep that wedding gift cash secure!
Accepting digital deposits of cash as wedding gifts is super convenient – who needs a fourth waffle maker? However, evaluate any payment service closely for security holes. You wouldn’t want some random person with the same name as you getting a grand from your grandma. See if your bank has an online payments feature, for example. Honestly, paper checks are a secure option, too.
Think about who sees your honeymoon pics
When you’re enjoying the bliss of your honeymoon, spend a few moments thinking about your security. Avoid using public Wi-Fi while traveling. Also, think about who can see your honeymoon pics and your location via social media. If all this information is public, a bad actor might put together that your home is empty. Even if this seems like a remote concern, with everything social media, just share with care!
May your cybersecurity be as strong as your love!