Why worry about identity theft?
You may think that identity theft is something that individuals who get mugged or lose their wallet need to concern themselves about, but the truth is identity theft can affect anyone and everyone from the person who lost their wallet at a concert to those who are most careful about keeping track of their financial documents. Identity theft can be a major problem for you as individuals unknown utilise your personal information to enrich themselves at your expense. Spending your money, taking out cards in your name, and ruining your credit score – all the while masquerading as you.
Shield your mobile
Most people use their phones more than their home computers and that means that if you’re like the majority of people, you have used your phone for doing some form of banking or you keep personal documents stored on it. However, this makes your phone a mobile treasure trove for identity thieves. Keeping your phone safe can include something as simple as installing password protection to shield it in case your phone gets lost, but more importantly it can look like installing antivirus software on your phone to protect yourself from viruses which may find their way onto your mobile or anti-theft software so in case your phone goes missing, you can wipe the information on your phone remotely before it falls into the wrong hands.
Watch out for phishing scams
One of the easiest ways to protect yourself is to ensure that you do not engage with potential criminals or identity thieves. Never open up emails from dubious sources or ones you do not recognize. If you happen to and it claims to be from your bank or another reputable provider and it is asking for personal financial information, do not fill it out! Your bank will almost never ask for this type of information but it is a treasure trove for identity thieves if you simply fill out their questionnaire with all the information they need to steal from you.
The thing that really encapsulates everything that has been said is to be proactive. Don’t wait for there to be a problem and then address it. Thieves count on your inaction to provide them with the valuable time to steal your information and to make new purchases. By keeping track of your bank accounts, credit cards, emails, and notifications from your legitimate bank as well as not downloading questionable software or opening up potentially hazardous emails, you can be proactive in the fight against identity theft and ensure that your identity is secure.