Cybersecurity for wedding planning: Say “I do” to digital bliss

Man wearing suit and woman wearing wedding dress walking up grassy wedding aisle while having petals thrown at them by guests

Planning a wedding is one of the most exciting moments in your life, but it can also be 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.

You can ensure your perfect day goes smoothly with a few simple security measures. We’re here to help with tips on securing your personal information, even in the thick of wedding planning (dealing with family members and learning how to dance—that might be outside our scope).

A password shouldn’t be your “something borrowed”

Many couples might open several new accounts when planning a wedding, from joint bank accounts to a wedding website. Although you trust your partner, it’s best not to share passwords. It 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. You should also enable multi-factor authentication on any account that allows it because it adds another layer of security.

Need a refresher on the qualities of a strong password? Generate a password that’s complex, long, unique, and strong—and not your maiden name.

Verify your vendors

Especially if you’re planning your wedding on your own, you’ll be dealing with many vendors: venues, caterers, DJs, photographers, videographers, photo booth experts—the list is endless. But you should verify everyone you hire before signing contracts or submitting payments.

How? Read multiple reviews of each vendor. Check that the reviews seem legitimate, i.e., not written by the vendor. Do star ratings match up with what the reviews say? Sometimes, vendors might offer cash or discounts for high ratings. If the vendor seems like they’re just starting, proceed with caution—try to make contact in various ways (email, phone, and in person) before sending any money (and only after you both sign a thorough contract).

Does a price seem too good to be true? Listen to that instinct. Never pay anyone before both parties sign a contract that explains what goods and services the vendor will provide for a specified cost.

Be choosy with your online services

Treat your and your future spouse’s personal information like cash. This includes Social Security numbers and bank account data of course, but also birth dates, mailing addresses, and contact information. 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 sharing your personal information with a service, don’t do it.

Keep that wedding gift cash secure

Accepting digital cash deposits as wedding gifts is super convenient—because who needs another waffle maker? However, evaluate any payment service closely for security holes. You wouldn’t want a random person with the same name as you getting a chunk of change from your grandma. See if your bank has an online payment feature, for example. Paper checks are a secure option, too.

Think about who sees your honeymoon pictures

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 consider 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 and potentially break in.

Bottom line

Planning a wedding can be fun—but it’s easy to get caught up in the whirlwind and let your guard down, leaving you vulnerable to cybercriminals. Whether you’re just starting to plan or getting ready to walk down the aisle, it’s crucial to stay vigilant and secure your personal information. By following the above tips, you can help ensure your big day goes smoothly and enjoy the process along the way.

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