Cybersecurity Participant Guide: Steps to Keep Retirement Assets Safe

| May 17, 2022

It's an understatement to say that cyber fraud is a growing concern. Interestingly, individuals are often very careful to keep their social security number and bank and email account credentials safe, but not so much with the rest of their personal information.

As cyber fraud matures and participant's retirement accounts grow, it will of top importance for participants to be vigilant with their retirement savings accounts as well. In the past year we’ve seen a slew of cases of attempted fraud – some successful – against retirement savings plan participants across a multitude of recordkeepers. The good news is that virtually all recordkeepers view security as a prominent priority and diligently update their technology. However, their security can only go so far if the participant isn’t being equally vigilant.

Here are six easy steps you can share with your plan participants to help them ensure the security of their retirement savings accounts:

  1. Use all available levels of authentication. If your plan’s recordkeeper comes out with a new type of authentication, implement it sooner than later
  2. If you frequent a website or have an account with a company whose website and information has been compromised, change your passwords for your online accounts
  3. Use strong passwords.
    • Utilize letters, capitalization, numbers and symbols
    • Avoid using recognizable words
    • Avoid using the same password for multiple purposes
    • Consider using passwords that are at least 14 characters in length
    • Consider changing passwords frequently (using a password manager can make this task a little less unwieldly)
  4. Don’t send usernames or passwords to any third parties and limit access to use on sites which are navigated to independently – not through a link or other prompt 
  5. Check your accounts frequently and address any irregularities
  6. Contact your plan administrator and recordkeeper if you receive any “updates” that look suspicious

How Stonebridge Can Help

It can be a bit overwhelming to administer a company retirement plan, given all the documentation nuances let alone the deadlines! At Stonebridge Financial Group, we work exclusively with retirement plans and can help you with everything from designing to running your plan. Delegating fiduciary responsibilities can be a great solution for plan sponsors who lack time and the knowledge of ever-changing requirements to manage a retirement plan -- it's is all we've done since our inception back in 2004! Our robust service offering starts with ERISA 3(21) and 3(38) services and is the tip of the iceberg. We are consultants that help you with every aspect of your plan:

  • Implementing cybersecurity best practices 
  • Plan design including student debt benefits
  • Complete IRS and CPA audit support - we have ex-auditors on staff!
  • Participant 1:1 and group education
  • Fee benchmarking
  • Ensuring participant retirement readiness
  • Consulting on financial wellness
  • Committee fiduciary training
  • Process creation and documentation
  • Plan design
  • Contribution match modeling
  • Annual plan compliance review

We become your outsourced retirement plan officer who dives into the morass of retirement plan details and resolves issues so you don't have to!

Please click here to schedule a short call, give us a call at (855) 530-0500 x601 or email We look forward to helping your committee successfully fulfill their fiduciary duties with ease and excellence!