There are numerous ways hackers and scammers can acquire details that will allow them to assume your identity online. In some cases, the perpetrator steals another person’s identity simply to cause harassment. However, there are also identity thieves whose motivation is to steal as much money as possible from unsuspecting victims.

To protect your online identity, it helps to understand how these criminals operate. With the right education, you can learn how to avoid online pitfalls that lead scammers to make fraudulent transactions on your behalf.

1. Phishing scams

Phishing is one of the most common ways scammers are able to commit identity theft. Never enter your details on a website unless you are absolutely sure it is legitimate and safe. If you receive emails or messages stating that there is a problem with one of your accounts, please do not click on the link provided. If it’s a phishing scam, it will take you to a duplicate website where the scammer can steal your login details.

Always go directly to the website of the company or service provider in question. You can also contact a legitimate representative to determine if the contact was genuine. If a message alert asks you for sensitive personal information, such as a username and password, it’s almost certainly a phishing scam.

2. Virus protection

Professional scammers also use hacked websites to infiltrate your device and track your online activities. If the scammer is skilled enough in using and distributing software via a website, they can install what is called a key-logger on your device. Once installed, the hidden keystroke logger will record your every keystroke, including login details for banking and shopping websites.

The scammer is then able to access your accounts and perform various actions, including making online purchases. Most scammers at this level are careful to keep their purchases small in the beginning so as not to arouse suspicion. However, once he or she has access to another account, they are very likely to start buying expensive items before you know there is a problem.

3. Unique passwords

Password etiquette plays an important role in identity theft prevention. If you use the same password for every account, scammers have an easier job of gaining access to your bank or credit card account. It only takes one hacked account for all other accounts to be compromised. If you use unique passwords, however, you can limit the potential damage.

A long password with a combination of characters provides additional security. For example, “Password1” is a weak password, while “T47!Gh1S?952” is much more difficult for a fraudster to crack. Don’t worry if you can’t remember your password. Use a password manager to store all of your unique login details and be sure to change your passwords every 30 days.

4. Legitimate websites

Most people use a search engine to compare the price of items they want to buy. Your search will typically list websites that sell the item at the top of the page. These websites are usually reputable, but it’s always a good idea to check that your purchase is safe. The first thing to look for is “https” in the website address. This means that the website provides a secure connection and encrypts all entered details. It also helps to look for dealer reviews to get an idea of ​​the user experience.

While https is intended to protect users from scammers trying to steal personal details, it has vulnerabilities. To add an extra layer of security, we recommend using a virtual private network (VPN). This software is available for purchase and masks your location as well as provides encryption for any information you share on the web.

5. Keep your personal information

You wouldn’t walk into a crowded public area and start shouting your personal information. So why do it online? It’s easy to fall into the trap of thinking your online profiles are your safe space. However, scammers lurk everywhere, just waiting to steal valuable information that you gladly post in groups, forums, friends’ posts, and even your profile.

6. Warning signs of online theft

You should always take an active role in monitoring your important accounts. Make sure you get your statements every month and check back for recent purchases periodically. Banks, online retailers, and cell phone accounts are just some of the services scammers target. Stay vigilant and catch identity thieves before they clean out your bank account.

7. SSL Certificates

SSL certificates are like little secret data files that provide a secure connection between server and browser. An appropriate SSL certificate provides encryption and authentication. This means you can be sure you are sending information to the right server and not a hacker trying to steal your information. A wildcard SSL certificate covers your site’s domain and its subdomains. Here is a list of cheap wildcard SSL certificate providers that will save you money. Go and secure your website.

By skadmin

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