You would hate to think that by ordering that new purse or buying that airline ticket for vacation might end up costing you your identity. While most websites are secure when it comes to transactions, your personal and financial information can be compromised. As a result, they can open credit cards, checking accounts, and even get an ID and purchase a new car with your personal information. As a result, you could end up owing thousands of dollars, as well as have to seek legal help which can cost even more money.
Identify theft can unfortunately happen to anyone. Here is some information that might be helpful in recognizing it and preventing it to maintain your internet security.
Signs that Your Personal Information Might Be Compromised
1. You receive something that you did not order.
2. Unexplained things pop up on your credit report. You might not even notice this until you try to purchase something and you are declined due to your poor credit rating.
3. Unexplained purchases show up in your checking account or on your credit cards.
4. You receive calls from bill collectors for accounts that you did not open.
Preventing Identity Theft
1. Always shred any unwanted credit card offers or mail that might contain personal information such as your account number, social security number, checking account number, etc.
2. Stay up to date on the latest scams. There are several websites devoted to this.
3. use anti spam ware and ensure that your e-mail account has a spam filter on it to deposit unwanted emails into.
5. Don’t keep your personal or financial information on your computer. Likewise, don’t store your passwords on your computer either.
6. Don’t open an attachment if you receive an e-mail from someone that you don’t know. Use an anti-virus program to scan the e-mail first to make sure that it doesn’t contain any phishing or virus programs on it.
7. Keep your firewalls and anti-virus software up-to-date on all of your computers.
If you suspect that your security has been compromised, change all of your passwords, cancel your credit cards, close your bank account, and report it to the police. Also, report the activity at once to your financial institution and credit card company.