Does it worry you that someone may break into your house at night and rob you? Luckily, you probably have taken steps to prevent that since you are aware of the threat. But what about your online identity – is that also protected and safe? If your answer to this is no, then please read on for more information. Don’t let identity theft catch you off guard.
You say you aren’t that worried about it? OK, so you don’t go online to make a lot of purchases. Did you know that your information is already being stored in numerous databases around the country, even though you don’t shop online? If you have a credit card, any kind of loan, an account with your utility company, even having an iPhone or other smart phone that you use, your information can be vulnerable to web hackers. The scams and schemes these criminals have devised over the past few years is astonishingly clever, and they get better at it every year. In fact many supposedly secure databases have been hacked into the in the recent past, some with millions of accounts. This has become almost routine, and no end is in sight. Most of these thefts aren’t even making the news, since the companies involved don’t want you to know about the break-in.
So what can be done to protect yourself? Of course experts recommend checking your bank balance and credit card statements routinely to make sure there aren’t any unauthorized charges. But what if someone finds your credit card statement you threw away in the trash? They can actually pull this information and with a few other items from your identity, create an alternate identity that you would be totally unaware of. Sounds scary, I know. It happens almost every hour and every day in this country, and in many ways.
If you download music onto your iTunes account on your computer, and also routinely “share” songs with others from so-called sharing networks such as Limewire and Kazaa, hackers may have planted viruses in any one of the songs you downloaded. Unknown to you, this virus may open up a port on your PC while you are not aware, and send information to the hackers PC in another country. This is another reason you should also have a strong anti-virus software, but many people don’t even realize how important these things are and fail to exercise caution.
There are also other ways that criminals can steal your identity, such as Vishing (virtual phishing) – sending text messages or emails that mimic contacts you already know and trying to get your social security number or even your bank login and password. You would never fall for that though, right? Many people unfortunately do, and without some kind of protection their identities are stolen and their credit is ruined in a matter of days or weeks.
Criminals have gotten much smarter over the years, since they know that people are more aware of their tactics. Coming up with newer and better scams is all they do! So each year more people lose their good credit, lose thousands of dollars from their bank accounts, or have many thousands of dollars charged to their credit cards. Without any type of protection, it is hard to restore your good credit again and can take years. Don’t go without protection any longer, take steps today to protect your financial future.
Learn more about identity theft protection now and sleep safer at night!