Protecting Your Family from Identity Theft
You should always protect your personal information, but now you must be extra careful. During the COVID-19 pandemic, identity theft is spiking. In this blog, we offer several tips for protecting you and your family’s personal information.
1. Update Your Devices
During the COVID-19 pandemic, you and your family are likely spending more time than ever online. Update your devices so they have the latest security patches. This is especially important as laptops and iPads are shared within quarantined households. Set your devices to update during “off-hours” to prevent disruptions to remote working and online schooling.
2. Only Use Secure Websites
Per COVID-19 stay-at-home orders, more Americans are shopping online. To avoid having your credit card and personal information stolen, remember to only use websites with SSL certificates. Google requires every website it promotes to have an SSL certificate. If you are unsure of a website’s security, look for https:// in the web address. You should also see a “lock” icon on the far left of the URL.
3. Be Careful What You Share on Social Media
Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and other social media platforms make it easy to stay in touch with family and loved ones during the COVID-19 pandemic. But remember that identity thieves scour social media sites looking for personal data. To stay safe, configure your social media platform’s security settings so you only share your posts with those you trust.
4. Check Each Family Member’s Credit Report
It can take weeks or months to realize someone has stolen your identity. Keep a close eye on your credit. Each of the three major credit reporting bureaus entitles each member of your family to one free annual credit report. Be sure to request these and scrutinize them for suspicious or incorrect information.
5. Fortify Your Home Network
Every device connected to your WiFi network offers a pathway for intruders to access your family’s data. Encryption is the best way to secure your home wireless network from hackers. Most WiFi routers come equipped with WPA and WPA2 encryption. Choose WPA2 for the highest security. Use a firewall and choose a secure password to protect your network from hackers.
6. Shred Sensitive Documents
Identity thieves don’t always resort to high-tech methods; they also steal confidential financial and medical information from trash and recycling bins. Always be sure to shred any unwanted personal and business documents.
The COVID-19 pandemic presents unprecedented and uncertain times for our community, our country, and the world. Don’t become the victim of identity theft, too.
Land Shark Shredding has always been committed to keeping your data secure. We offer secure document destruction services in Bowling Green, southwest Kentucky, Middle Tennessee, and the Orlando, Florida area. To get a free quote or learn more about our services, please contact us by phone at 270-793-0880 or complete the form on this page.