Every year, millions of Americans are having their personal data compromised The number of victims keeps increasing. From massive security breaches, and data breaches of a massive scale to Social Security and IRS scams There are a lot of dangers to be aware of.
In actuality, there is a chance that the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has received close to 1.3 million complaints regarding scams committed by government officials in the last year.
Many people don’t realize about identity theft or fraud until it’s too late. It is your responsibility to keep an eye on your financial and personal information security. The actions you take to be proactive can be a big help and help you avoid the pain of dealing with theft and fraud.
Does there exist a distinction between identity theft and fraud?
Identity theft and fraud are frequently utilized in the same way, but what’s the distinction? To better protect yourself and your family knows the subtle distinctions. The difference between fraud and theft can be distinguished through the manner in which the stolen data is used. When thieves are involved in identity theft, they make use of your personal details including Social Security numbers, birth dates as well as addresses and names to take your identity. If someone is able to access the information, they are able to create new credit cards under your name and apply for jobs or even get taxes from you.
However, identity fraud happens when someone steals personal details to commit a crime such as using credit cards already used to purchase fraudulent items. Criminals cannot use your identity or personal details in order to carry out crimes, without having the details first. So, the two criminal acts go hand-in-hand.
Here are some suggestions to safeguard yourself:
1. Don’t click on suspicious emails.
Many people are familiar with the concept of phishing an attack that involves sending emails or using fake websites that are designed to steal your personal details. Identity thieves could appear to be credit banks or credit card companies to reach you directly. If you’ve been phished you’ll get an email that requests you to verify your transactions or your personal information. Unofficial URLs and spelling mistakes are the most obvious indications of fake emails. If you see something that appears suspicious, you should not click on it . Instead, call an institution to confirm the authenticity of the information.
2. Be wary of sharing private personal data that is highly sensitive.
Do not share too much online – this includes your social media profile. Sharing numbers, addresses, or social security numbers on the internet makes you a prime to be a victim of identity theft.
3. Be aware of your mailbox and shred financial documents prior to throwing them away.
Make sure you pick up your mail on a regular basis particularly if you’re getting bills on paper. Drop off any mail you wish to send at the post office rather than leaving it out to minimize the risk.
4. Mix it up and then change your passwords.
Making the same username and password for each website login can make it easier for hackers to steal your personal information. Once hackers have access to that information, they are able to gain access to all your online activities. Make changes and reset your passwords once every couple of months to make sure that hackers aren’t in your way. There are also a lot of trusted password managers that can aid you in managing and protecting your passwords.
5. Keep ahead of the game by spotting unusual texts.
A relatively new method for identity theft has been SMiShing which is similar to Phishing, however it is carried out via text messages sent to SMS. Most likely, you’ll receive an unauthorized SMS message sent by your bank as well as a credit card firm stating that your account has been compromised. The message will either include the link to view the transaction, or ask for a callback number to talk about the problem. Be vigilant and not responding to messages that appear suspicious.
6. Create the Active Duty alert on your credit file.
Active Duty Alert Alert for Active Alert for Duty Alert can be described as a specific security alert for fraud that was created to safeguard service members. When the alert is in effect businesses will have to follow additional security measures before granting credit to your name. If you’re scheduled to be deployed in the near future, you should make sure you have An Active Duty Alert on your credit report to reduce the risk of identity theft.
What do you do if you’re unsure if your identity been taken
You’ve decided to make it your goal to be vigilant to the indicators that indicate identity theft. You’ve come across something suspicious on the internet or through email. You might have noticed mistakes on your credit report , or you started receiving bills for new credit cards that you didn’t have to sign up for. What can you do?
If you believe you’re the victim of identity theft, you should contact your financial institution as well as creditors to shut down any accounts compromised. Always report theft to FTC as well as The Social Security Administration if your Social Security number has been compromised.
Take an official report of your credit report and submit it to the credit bureaus, so that you can contest any mistakes or frauds prior to them affecting your credit score. If there’s a chance that your checkbook is stolen or lost Don’t forget to notify an organization that checks for you.
Even even if you take all necessary steps to safeguard your data, there are times when something unexpected happens and your personal information gets compromised. This is a common occurrence in the digital age. Your best defense is to be a strong defense against security threats.