Identity theft is more common than you think, in particular in the modern digital era. Unfortunately, everyone is a potential target to hackers. Why? Because we all post personal information online.
If you’re worried about online dangers and want to protect yourself, you’ve come to the right place. Let’s discuss why and how hackers steal your data. Then we’ll go over how you can protect yourself with specialized software.
What Is Identity Theft?
Identity theft happens when criminals obtain your personal or financial information and use it to commit fraud. They can make unauthorized transactions, purchase products with your credit card, file taxes on your behalf, and much more.
As already mentioned, it’s a growing problem in our digital era. It costs billions of dollars annually, and that’s only in the US. It’s more important than ever to keep an eye on our Internet use. An extra layer of alert never hurt anyone.
Why Do Hackers Steal Your Data and Identity?
You might wonder why anyone would steal your data. There are numerous reasons, as already mentioned above. But here are the main reasons why this occurs. Hackers can:
- Sell your data and make a profit. On the other hand, whoever buys your personal information probably has criminal purposes.
- Spend your money and even get you in legal trouble, such as debts.
- Blackmail you with sensitive information.
How Do Hackers Steal Your Data?
Again, there are infinite ways criminals can steal your online and private data. For example, have you ever heard of devices that capture electronic signals from your computer or smartphone and hack you? This method became quite popular a few years ago, and it’s still a thing. If you’re in a public space and see suspicious or shady behavior, turn your devices off. Your bank account will thank you.
Here are other common ways someone can steal your identity.
- Your information is everywhere, and we mean everywhere. You have online passwords, email and home addresses, phone numbers, and more. Should a hacker enter one of your online accounts, they’ll gain access to every bit of information about you.
- Phishing. Anyone can trick you into thinking they’re a reputable source, such as a well-known company. Say you receive an Amazon email that asks you to reset your password or log into your account to solve a problem. If the email looks legit enough, you might do what it says. That’s where you go wrong and where hackers use the information you gave to steal your identity. You wouldn’t believe how many technological hacks exist: from emails to online credit card use and much more.
How Can You Protect Yourself?
- Modify your password every six months at least. Make sure it’s long and has special characters. The more numbers and special symbols, the better. But don’t just write “1234” at the end of your password.
- Don’t use the same password for everything. We know it can be hard to remember different words and numbers combinations. But that will make accessing your accounts way harder for criminals. Otherwise, should they get your one-fits-all password, you lost everything.
- Keep an eye on your bank account. Sometimes it’s hard to track every movement we make. Are these expenses bills, treats I gave myself, subscriptions? However, if there are suspicious movements you don’t remember or that don’t make sense, that’s a red flag.
- Use end-to-end encrypted messaging services. WhatsApp, for instance, offers this feature. Encryption means that only you and the recipient’s device can read the messages. Not only is it useful, but it has become a necessity. Make sure the messaging services you use are encrypted.
- Always make sure the communication you receive (SMS texts, emails, and more) is legit. It doesn’t matter how genuine and reputable it looks. Is it really the company the claim to be? Are they trustworthy?
Although safety tips are a must to implement into your online routine, they’re sometimes not enough. That’s where specialized software like Solinkit comes in.
This software lets you know when your credit reports change, giving you enough time to check if everything’s right and take action if not. All precautions are few in situations like these, so do not hesitate to contact us and get a personalized plan.