Keeping Your Identity Safe Online
Keeping your identity safe online should be a priority for all Internet users, as identity thieves are becoming even more cunning and they can easily steal anyone’s information. This is why it is essential to be proactive. Here is some information about keeping your identity safe online.
Never Reveal Any Personal Information through Email
Phishing is one way that identity thieves steal information. Banks will never send out emails that ask people for any person information. Many people believe that these emails are real and respond to them which can make their data vulnerable. Most banks will not only call you, but will ask you to verify your identity by answering correctly several security questions.
This safeguard is in place to protect account holders from being victimized. If an email looks off or is in your spam account, then delete it because more than likely it is not an authentic notification from a financial institution.
Do Not Use Public Computers for Banking
Many people use public Wi-Fi hot spots to use the Internet. People should avoid doing any online banking or logging into any personal accounts while on an open Internet network connection. Identity thieves can hack into these networks and see the data. This is why people should be careful when using public computers.
Make Sure Websites Used Are Secure
When surfing the Internet, never enter any credit or debit card information into websites that are not secure. There needs to be the proper amount of data encryption to help to ensure that identity thieves cannot see the information. If a website does not have a secure logo on it, then avoid using the site entirely.
Monitor Your Credit Reports Regularly
The average person only checks their credit reports once per year, at most. Do you realize how much damage can happen to your credit in a year’s time? Not knowing what’s on your credit report is a sure fire way to having your credit rating destroyed by a case of identity theft. We recommend pulling a copy of your reports at least every other month, if not once per month. This will cost you a fee to see your reports this often, but it’s worth the cost. You may also want to consider signing up for a paid or free credit monitoring service that will keep track of your credit reports for you. These generally cost from nothing to $30 per month, depending on the features you want. To learn more, take a moment to read The Best Credit Monitoring Services In 2017 – StopIdentityFraud.org
Clear Your Web History and Cookies
Your web history and cookies can be used to track your online activity. Identity thieves want to be able to steal credit card and bank account numbers. This is why leaving your web history and cookies behind for hours or days can be a bad idea. There are private browsing sessions that people can utilize online. This is a great option when order items online or paying bills.
Once a person has completed any transactions or filled out forms online, they should immediately clear their cookies and web history. This can greatly reduce the chances of identity theft taking place.
Update Your Passwords Frequently
It is important to always change your online account passwords every few weeks. The strength of the passwords should be strong enough so that hackers cannot easily figure them out. Many people have been locked out of their accounts because thieves have stolen their log in information. This is why using any easy to guess passwords can leave many people out in the cold and without any access to their online accounts.
Identity theft is a very random act. This means that anyone can get targeted because criminals just seek out the information by any means necessary. If consumers take the time to try to defend themselves against these attacks, then they can have a more secure way to manage their financial matters.