In 2020 the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) received 1,387,615 identity theft cases.
What’s even more worrying is that this number keeps increasing every year. So, to curb this threat, you need to learn the best identity theft protection techniques to employ. These are techniques that protect your personal data from hackers who have malicious intentions.
To help you out, here are nine tips about identity theft protection you need to know.
1. Learn How to Create Strong Passwords
Many Americans use weak passwords, making it easy for hackers to guess. These people use obvious things as their passwords, such as their names and birth dates. So, it’s wise you learn how to create strong passwords to protect your personal data.
That’s why you should even move to using passphrases instead of passwords to boost security. The reason is that passphrases are much harder for hackers to crack. In addition, avoid changing your passwords too often as this creates data breach vulnerabilities.
Besides, don’t make the mistake of writing down your passwords on paper. Instead, use passphrases that are easy to remember and impossible for anyone else to guess.
2. Check Your Credit Report Frequently
To prevent identity theft, you need to regularly check your credit report. Some fraudsters steal your personal information and open bank accounts where they borrow money. Most Americans realize this only when banks contact them to repay these loans.
So, be proactive and frequently check your credit report to learn about these loans early. When you discover that someone has stolen your personal information, seek the help of the top attorneys. So, use resources like https://financialjusticenow.com/ to find these lawyers.
You want to learn to legally handle identity theft to protect your money and credit score.
3. Regularly Check All Your Accounts
The other identity theft protection advice many people ignore is checking their accounts regularly. Most people find this task to be tedious and time-consuming. And that’s why they rarely do it until a problem arises.
So don’t be like these people, instead make it hard to frequently check your bank account records. The great thing is that now you can access your bank and credit statements online. So, by checking frequently, you’ll identify a problem early and take the appropriate action.
4. Limit the Personal Information You Share on Social Media
Many hackers are now targeting social media accounts to access your personal information. These hackers get your names, date of birth, and preferences from your social media accounts. With this data, it is easy for them to apply for credit cards using your name.
So, to minimize this risk, you need to be cautious about the things you share on social media. The great thing is that now you can restrict the number of people who see your social media profile. The idea is to make it private so only authorized people can see it.
5. Protect Your Social Security Number
You must be extremely careful when sharing your social security number. Ensure that only authorized persons can access this number. Besides, be careful of the platforms you use to send your social security number.
The reason is that hackers have access to numerous messaging apps. So, you’re risking things when you send your social security number via these platforms.
6. Avoid Leaving a Paper Trail
Many Americans assume that identity thieves only work online, so, it is safe to write personal information on paper. However, this is wrong as these thieves are willing to dig through your dumpster. The idea is to get any documents that contain valuable personal information.
That’s why you should make it a habit to shred all personal documents that you plan to dispose of. You want to avoid leaving a paper trail that identity thieves can use.
7. Protect Your Personal Computer
To stop identity theft, you need to find practical ways to protect your personal computer. Most likely, you store all your personal information on your laptop. So, if a hacker gains access to your laptop, they will access all your personal data.
That’s why you need to create a strong laptop lock password. Besides, you need to learn how to protect your laptop from threats such as ransomware.. You want to know the various anti-virus tools to install on your personal computer.
8. Avoid Taking Baits
Many Americans fall prey to scam phone calls where they’ll be tricked to reveal their personal information. So, when you receive a suspicious phone call, be careful with the information you share. If you’re not sure who is calling, terminate the call immediately.
You want to verify the identity of the caller before you share sensitive personal data. So, when learning how to protect yourself from identity theft, you should learn how to avoid taking these baits. You want to only share personal information with legitimate callers.
9. Be Cautious About the Websites You Use
Today the internet has made it easy to order goods and pay for them from the convenience of your home. However, be careful with the websites you use when online shopping. So, before you input your credit card information, check the website’s credibility.
Avoid websites that in the past have been accused of selling personal data to third parties. The reason is that you cannot trust such websites to protect your personal information. Besides, learn what to do if given websites allow data leakage and unauthorized persons access your sensitive data.
Enhance Cybersecurity by Learning the Best Identity Theft Protection Techniques
The number of identity theft victims is increasing at an alarming rate, so you need to learn how to protect yourself. That’s why you need to learn the best identity theft protection techniques to adopt. You want to learn how to create strong passwords and the need to check your credit report frequently.
For more amazing data security tips, see our other blog posts.