Here are 3 ways to stay connected while protecting yourself from identity theft
Although it may seem a little annoying at times, one of the most important ways you can protect yourself from identity theft is by locking your keypad. It can be so easy to lose your phone, have it stolen in a public place, from your pocket or bag, or for someone to sneak through it when you leave it unattended at work. It takes just seconds for someone who knows what they are looking for to find vital information on your smartphone, so be vigilant.
Four digit codes are very quick to type in on the large keypad, but text codes are infinitely safer. The settings can be adjusted to make the lock time automatic after a certain timeframe if this works best for you.
Every time you download something onto your phone, you’ll be asked to click a permissions button. Quite often, there are some suspect things included in the list, but people don’t bother reading it. If you are downloading a simple app and you notice that it’s asking for your email details to do so, cancel the download and look for another.
Sometimes it seems almost impossible to download anything without giving up some of your private information, but you have to decide if you trust the company you are providing that information to and what you’re getting in return. Your email address may not seem like a big deal, but any information can be a way in for identity thieves.
iPhones are, by far, the safest smartphones in this respect as Apple put apps through rigorous testing to make sure this kind of thing does not happen. Android apps do not share the same level of security, however, and there have been many malware issues reported.
Operating systems are updated on a regular basis, and these update patches always include a host of security fixes that have been identified. Always install these patches as soon as it flashes up, because the problems that the patch fixes are security issues which are already being exploited by identity thieves and fraudsters.
It’s important that you are extremely vigilant in everything you do online, as it only takes one lapse in protocol for your identity to be stolen. The very first thing you should do is put a keypad lock on your phone. The next thing you should do is install all security updates, and after that, you should make sure that you are very careful about what personal information you are making available to people.
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