How To Keep Your Personal And Professional Information Safe Online
Technology has become an integral part of our daily lives. As such, we often get comfortable using it and forget that the more it evolves, the more cybercrimes (such as identity theft) will affect our personal security. If you don’t take steps to protect yourself now, you’ll only become a target. Here are some tips on how to keep yourself safe online.
Understand ID theft.
Identity theft is a cybercrime that involves using your personal information to create bank accounts or other legal agreements in your name. Unfortunately, as Mark Medley of ID Theft Resolutions found out the hard way back in 2001, it’s exponentially difficult to recover from this type of violation. Once you understand what it is, you will be in a better position to prevent or react to it in the future.
Know your resources.
Although many states have now enacted ID theft protections, these may not be available immediately. Keeping yourself safe is important, especially when you’re a small business owner and have many people relying on your good name for a job. Take the time to get to know the resources available to you so that you were not skipping out on valuable information or training because of cost or lack of time. Keep in mind that protecting your small business means teaching your employees how to protect themselves from phishing and other scams.
Update your software.
As hackers continue to grow better at their job, so do software developers and app makers. But to combat threats, you need to ensure that your PC and all of its installed apps update automatically.
Stop playing online games.
Determining your cute elf name or what job suits your face the best is all in good fun on your end. But as Snopes and countless law enforcement agencies across the country have warned before, these innocent quizzes are often cleverly-designed to social-engineering scams used to dig for personal information.
Create a strong password (and change it often).
Your password is supposed to be the key that opens up your online world. But like a key to your front door, they are easy to steal — particularly if you do not take the time to create a strong one. This should include at least 15 characters and incorporate numbers, letters, and different cases. You should also change your password often. Remember, it is easier than ever for criminals to hack your password using everything from custom-designed apps to free password cracking tools that are easily available online.
Take precautions when using public Wi-Fi.
Public Wi-Fi is a godsend for people who work remotely or that need to keep up with their friends and family on the go. It is an appealing amenity offered by hotels, coffee shops, and even retail stores. But public Wi-Fi is not without its risks, according to Kaspersky, a US-based adaptive security technology company. The company suggests, among other things, utilizing a VPN and SSL connections if you must browse the internet away from your home network.
The above is certainly not everything you need to know about online security and how to protect yourself from identity theft. But for those of you that are not familiar with the risks, it’s a good start. Remember, the more you know, the more proactive you can be in keeping yourself, your family, and your business safe from the dangers floating around on the World Wide Web.
ID Theft Resolutions can help you protect your sensitive information online or take back your life after ID theft. Contact ID Theft Resolutions today for more information and insight or to schedule your family check-up.
By: Carla Lopez