Protecting Your Privacy: Travel Tips

June 4, 2014 Leave a comment

Summer time travel is upon us. Traveling can lead to increased exposure of your information. Be wary of updating software on hotel wireless internet connections. Pop-ups warning hotel guests of a needed software update in order to connect to the internet have infected numerous hotel guests with malware. Unknowing guests assume the pop-up is legitimate and end up downloading viruses.

Ordering delivery to your hotel room? Be cautious of the take-out flyer you found on your hotel door.  Fraudsters are now posing as restaurants who ask you to prepay for your food order over the phone. Your food never gets delivered and now the fraudster has your credit card info.  Be cautious of this as you never know where that phone number is actually going. Ask the hotel for restaurant recommendations to avoid this trick.

Keep the number of cards and information you carry with you limited. If you normally carry five credit cards limit yourself to one or two. If you don’t need your Passport for the trip, don’t bring it with you. Travel with the least amount of personal information as possible, the less you have to lose the less you have to replace should an issue arise.

Enjoy your summer travel with these easy tips to help better protect your information.

 

Categories: Privacy & Prevention

Take Precautions Online

May 28, 2014 Leave a comment

Today, people live out their entire lives online. Studies have reinforced time and time again that if you are online, your chances of identity fraud skyrockets. A report from Pew Research Center states that 18% of online adults have had important information stolen. In addition, 21% of online adults have had an email or social networking account compromised.

To protect your information online, be sure to avoid providing personal information online and never on an unsecured wireless network. Only provide information to reputable companies and try to avoid clicking on links from your email. If you aren’t already, protect yourself with InfoArmor!

Source: Forbes, “Nearly a fifth of Americans Suffer Data Breach – Many risk ID theft.” April 14, 2014.

Categories: Privacy & Prevention

Protecting Your Privacy: Tactics Straight from the Thieves

April 24, 2014 Leave a comment

A recent report called “The Fraudsters’ Playbook” detailed the most common ways that thieves recommend stealing an identity. Be aware of these common schemes so you do not fall for them:

  1. Fake Wi-Fi networks – thieves create deceptive Wi-Fi networks that closely mirror the real public network name to get you to install malware on your computer, which can track passwords and give them access to email and bank accounts. When using public networks, do not login to sensitive accounts such as banking sites or email accounts.
  2. Door-to-Door Census workers – fake census workers show up at your doorstep asking for name, address, date of birth, email or even more sensitive information and use it to steal your personal information. Be skeptical of anyone asking for your personal information and require proper credentials before giving information to anyone.
  3. Social Media Sites – thieves scrape social media sites in order to find personal information online that can be used to answer security questions for banking sites or other online accounts. Keep security settings as high as you can to limit the amount of information you share online.

If you have questions about identity theft protection or you think your information has been impacted, please contact InfoArmor.

*Source: Jumio, The Fraudsters’ Playbook

 

Categories: Privacy & Prevention

2014 Latest Identity Theft Statistics

April 23, 2014 Leave a comment

A recent survey estimated that last year identity theft affected over 13.1 million Americans.  That would equate to a new victim of fraud every two seconds. This is the second highest number of estimated victims in one year and can be attributed to a spike in the number of existing card fraud cases. The estimated fraud amount increased to over $18 billion in damages last year.

You can rest assured that we are monitoring your identity and proactively watching for misuse. If we detect suspicious activity, you will be the first to know. Additionally we will provide full-service identity restoration to help fix your identity in the event that you do suffer from fraud. If you think you are a victim or have questions about your service, please call us at the number listed below.

*Source: Javelin Strategy & Research, 2014 Identity Fraud Report. February 2014.

Tax Time Tips

March 17, 2014 Leave a comment

Tax return thieves use someone else’s Social Security number to file for a tax return for themselves, often even resulting in the victim’s wages being garnished for taxes the thief owes. It can be a lengthy process to convince the IRS that your have been a victim of identity theft and the money they believe you owe is not your responsibility.

This tax season, be sure to follow these tips:

  1. If you receive a phone call or email from the IRS it is a scam. Don’t give them any information; hang up on the caller or forward the email to spam@uce.gov for investigation.
  2. Check with the Better Business Bureau to make sure that your tax preparer is credible.
  3. Make sure your computer’s anti-virus software is up to date so hackers cannot access information on your computer. Password-protect sensitive documents that you store on your computer to prevent misuse.
  4. Check your mail frequently because an unlocked mailbox is an open invitation to thieves.  Be sure to take mail directly to the post office when mailing anything with sensitive information.
  5. Use a cross-shredder to dispose of any documents that you no longer need.
By staying vigilant about protecting your information you shouldn’t have any problems with your identity this tax season.  If you believe that your identity has been compromised, call an InfoArmor Privacy Advocate at 800.789.2720.

The Evolution of Fraud

March 10, 2014 Leave a comment

Identity theft is a constantly evolving industry. Years ago, identity theft damages were limited to credit card fraud for unauthorized purchases.  As banks and financial institutions adapted and put stronger preventative measures in place, thieves began using stolen Social Security number to open new lines of credit.

Today identity fraudsters find value in personal information. Even seemingly harmless information such as your pet’s name or an email can be valuable to a thief because it can be used to find more information through social media sites, online searches, or even more advanced techniques.  Hackers are now using social engineering and phishing schemes to trick the user into divulging information onto a seemingly legitimate site that is actually run by fraudsters. Thieves steal personal information to sell on the black market for pennies or dollars for full information profiles.

Because of this evolution of the crime, it is important to safeguard personal information to prevent exposure. Consumers must also be cautious to make sure that they only provide personal information when completely necessary and only to trusted companies. Learn more about InfoArmor’s solution at  www.infoarmor.com.

Online Safety

March 3, 2014 Leave a comment

Follow these tips to protect yourself online:

  • Hover Before you Click – BEFORE clicking on a link, hover over the link to examine the URL that appears at the bottom of your browser. If the site is not the place you are intending to visit, do not click on this link. If you are browsing from your tablet or iPad, touch and hold the link to pull up a window with the true URL to check before tapping the link.
  • Password Management- Use a unique and complex password for each site you create a login for. Your passwords are the only thing standing between your banking information, social media sites, email accounts, etc. and hackers. Use a combination on upper and lowercase letters, numbers, and symbols that cannot be found in the dictionary. Make passwords at least eight characters long.
  • Website Warnings – When given an option, do not let websites store your credit card information for future purchases. The fewer opportunities for exposure, the better. Only enter personal information on sites that begin with “https” meaning that they have been certified as secure sites with an encrypted connection. Do not use public, unsecured WiFi to perform financial or personal transactions as your credentials can be easily compromised.

If you are worried about your online safety, you should consider an identity monitoring company that will also monitor your information on the dark internet or places where thieves go to buy and sell personal information. InfoArmor’s solution includes “Internet Surveillance” to do just that. Learn more at http://www.infoarmor.com.

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