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Anti-virus software

Software which seeks and removes viruses and potential threats from your computer.


The process we use to verify the identity of individuals signing in to the online service.


Software which allows you to view websites as words and pictures on your screen (for example IE6).


A small piece of information which can be placed into your internet browser by a website you have visited. These are usually text files and contain a unique identification number. This is how a website can identify a returning visitor. When you visit a website you may set some preferences (for example, your region on a weather site). When you next visit that website, the website looks for the text file, inspects the cookie, collects the number and matches it to your stored preferences.

Intelligent Finance uses cookies for several reasons. For example, we can store your preferences for certain kinds of information, or keep track of your progress through our site. We also use Microsoft Active Service Pages on our websites and these need cookies to operate properly. It is important that your browser is set to accept cookies, otherwise you will only be able to access our marketing site.

How to set your browser to accept or disable cookies

The way in which you can set your browser to accept or disable cookies varies slightly according to exactly what browser (and operating system) you are currently using. Below are full instructions for changing your browser settings to accept or disable cookies

Dialogue box

These are similar to pop-up windows but are more like a grey box you might see when using Microsoft Windows. They appear on screen to prompt you for a response.


Encryption is a way of coding information to make it virtually impossible for someone else to read, unless they have the 'key' to decipher it.

The effectiveness of encryption is measured in bits (binary digits). The latest web browsers available from Microsoft and Netscape offer 128-bit encryption technology. Intelligent Finance cannot be used without 128-bit encryption - for your security and peace of mind.

If you find you are getting security alerts when you try to access your Intelligent Finance plan, please visit the Security Certificates page for advice on what to do.


A system used to protect your computer from unauthorised access by third parties.

Internet Service Provider (ISP)

The company who supplies you with your internet connection, for example, BT Openworld, Tiscali.

Operating System (OS)

A programme, such as Microsoft Windows XP, that enables your computer to operate software e.g. Microsoft Outlook Express.


An update required to correct a fault within the software overlooked at the time it was released. Also called a fix.


Phishing is the name given to the practice of sending emails at random which appear to come from a genuine company, usually a bank. The usual method is to send emails to as many people as possible, including people who do not even have an account or relationship with the bank in question.

The purpose of this is to try and trick customers of that bank into revealing their security details. This is done by creating a bogus website which looks exactly like the bank's online banking log in page. This bogus website is reached by clicking a link in the phishing email. The link often looks genuine but the code behind it points to the bogus website. These emails often claim that it is necessary to "update" or "verify" customer account information and they urge people to click on a link from the email in order to do so. If successful, security details are then captured at the bogus website and used to break in to the victim's account.

Intelligent Finance will never send emails that ask for confidential information or security details. If you get such an email, please delete it immediately without responding. For peace of mind, please see Intelligent Finance's Online fraud guarantee

Pop-up window

Information that appears in a new browser window and is not voluntarily activated by the PC user. Pop-ups are sometimes used by genuine companies to advertise their products. Many browsers now include pop-up blockers so that you can choose to prevent these.


Unwanted e-mails offering products and services of dubious benefit. Various types of anti-spam software are available, but the first line of defence may be your own Internet Service Provider, many of whom offer spam-filtering services. The golden rule is never to reply to a spam email, especially if it encourages you to click a link in order to unsubscribe from the mailing list. This will only confirm to the spammer that your email address is in use, and result in yet more spam.

SSL Certificate

SSL signifies Secure Sockets Layer and is an encryption technique for scrambling information (such as bank account details) as it is passed from the sender to the receiver. For a secure transaction to take place, both sides must supply a valid SSL certificate. A web address beginning with https:// signifies that SSL is in place and therefore that the website is secure. See also Security Certificates.


As the name suggests, Trojans can be hidden in an innocent piece of software or an email. Trojans are used by fraudsters to gain access to a user's PC and record their activities on the internet without their knowledge. Information such as personal sign-in details for online banking can potentially be recorded and then be used to access online bank accounts fraudulently. You may also hear the terms 'key logging software' or 'spyware' - these are types of Trojans (see Viruses and malware for more details).


A virus is a malicious programme which aims to harm your computer.

Web browser

You can check for the latest browser version from the provider’s website. For example, if you’re an Internet Explorer user, use Microsoft, if you’re a Firefox user, Mozilla, if you’re a Google Chrome user, check Google and if you’re a Safari user, check with Apple.

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