Las Vegas was recently ranked the 11th riskiest online city in the United States. We are more connected online than ever, and it’s easy to become a victim of identity theft over social media and e-commerce. Luckily, the best way to stay safe online is by using common sense.
Identity theft occurs when someone steals your personal data for their own personal gain. This data usually takes the form of cancelled checks, a social security number, a driver’s license number, a consumer’s address of record, a birth date, or a credit card/credit card statement. With your personal information, thieves can open a new credit card under your name, open a new line of credit at your bank, get a new driver’s license, a new social security card, or acquire wireless accounts under your name. Here are some steps you can take to protect yourself online:
- Avoid public Wi-Fi spots, especially when accessing your financial information.
- Keep your social security number confidential. Your social security number is the key that unlocks all personal information.
- Keep your mail safe by protecting the personal information mailed to you by banks and shredding old mail.
- Get off credit marketing lists. Thieves steal mailings and apply for credit in your name.
- Memorize your passwords and pins, and don’t leave them where someone can find them.
- When inputting credit card information, the address bar should change from “http” to “https” or “shttp.”