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Identity theft can and does literally happen everywhere and anywhere and it happens so often that it would almost seem ridiculous. All you have to do is turn on your television or radio and you will hear yet another story about a victim who has fallen into the hands of someone who has stolen their identity.
There are several special reports and speeches about how you can properly prevent identity theft. Statistics have shown that every three seconds there is an incident of identity fraud, that is how bad this situation has developed.
However, there are many efficient and easy ways to lower your risk of becoming a victim of identity fraud. These ways will be able to protect you from any type of identity theft and also help you to prevent it from happening.
Over Sharing On Social Network
One of the first and most important things that you need to do is to refrain from sharing too much personal information on social networks. Thanks to social media websites such as LinkedIn and Facebook there are so many individuals who are putting way too much personal information online for everyone to see and so many of them are not doing enough to keep criminals from learning such information. The internet has turned people into the type of individuals who just release any kind of personal information making them subject to becoming a victim of identity theft.
However, the good news is that you are able to protect yourself. You can protect yourself in many ways such as setting your privacy settings at the highest level and not listing information such as your birthday on the site. Any individual who uses a social media website is responsible for how much information they are willing to reveal and only they can prevent anything serious from happening.
There are many identity thieves who are actually using viruses, as well as other harmful computer programs, to steal people’s financial information. These harmful computer programs are able to enter your PC in a variety of ways. The most common of these viruses are emails that are sent to an inbox that have an attachment or a link and when the individual clicks on it, it installs malware and other viruses to your computer.
This is why it is important to keep your anti-malware and anti-virus software up to date to help prevent this from happening. Keeping your financial information limited on your computer is another way to keep that information from becoming stolen by identity thieves as well.
In today’s world banking has begun to increase rapidly and having access to your bank information is just a username and password away. Therefore, if you do a lot of online banking it is prudent that you make sure to choose a strong password, this way it makes it difficult for identity thieves to discover the password and have complete access to your bank account.
Make sure that when you are creating a password that you use letters that are lowercase and uppercase, use symbols within your password and use numbers as well. This helps to create a very strong password and makes it difficult to crack or break that information. You may even want to use a free open-source password manager like KeePassX.
To many individuals it may seem like the most convenient thing is to do your online banking at a restaurant or café, or to keep your home Wi-Fi unsecured so you do not have to take the time, every single time, to type in a password. However, these specific types of criminals are able to intercept all types of Wi-Fi communications.
Therefore, you do not want to be banking in a place that has an unsecured Wi-Fi that everyone is using because those individuals could easily access any of your information. It is better if you use a VPN like Private Internet Access to secure your connection or wait to do any of your personal things at home where you can use your secure Wi-Fi and to know that all of that valuable information is completely safe from thieves.
Monitor Your Bank Account
The last and possibly most important thing that you can do to protect yourself is to keep your bank account monitored at all times. Checking your account frequently is a way for you to keep track of what you are spending and how much you have left, however, it is also a way to be able to see if there is any other type of activity on there that is suspicious.
When you check your account regularly you will be able to see all of the things that you have done actively and also be able to tell when someone else has conducted a transaction that was not by you and that was not authorized. Then you can stop whatever is happening by contacting your bank and then cutting off the debit card that you have and allow them to issue you a new one. Therefore, make sure to monitor it regularly to be able to check for any unusual activities.
In conclusion, there are several ways to protect yourself from identity theft, however, if you do not take the proper precautions you could very well be the next victim. Once this crime has happened to you it is extremely difficult, and sometimes impossible, for you to recover from this attack and can cause a lot of disappointment, heart ache and financial loss.
Whenever you are using a computer make sure that you are doing everything you can to protect yourself. If you fail to follow the simple rules of identity theft protection you could suffer the consequences and they are not very pleasant at all. Take the time to protect yourself and your identity from thieves and when you do this it will guarantee that you have an extremely low chance of becoming a victim of this vicious crime.
Protecting yourself from identity theft in the Information Age is extremely important. We have outlined five important ways you can take action immediately to protect your privacy like using KeePassX to manage passwords or a VPN like Private Internet Access to secure your connection. Use what works best for you and you can find lots of other ideas in How To Vanish the book and here on HowToVanish.