Both experts and laypersons alike have argued that in utilizing the internet for purposes of automation and convenience, we have sacrificed our security as our personal information floats in the ether. In an age where a great deal of the fraud that occurs in the United States happens in cyberspace, consumers are being cautioned more than ever to steel themselves against the ever-evolving mousetrap of cyber fraud. From our private investigators, here are the best ways consumers and corporations can protect personal information online in 2022.
Strong login credentials
When everything is online—banking, shopping, email, asset protfolios—it can be difficult to remember every username and password, and therefore users may be inclined to use the same username and password for every account. However, experts insist that in order to best protect personal information, users must have a unique username and password for every account and platform where their personal information could be vulnerable to cyber fraud.
- Use both upper and lower case letters, numbers, and special characters like the “@” symbol to strengthen the credentials.
- Do not use personal information as passwords
- Do not store passwords on internet sites where they can be vulnerable to cyber criminals.
Avoid phishing scams
Phishing scams involve using deceptive correspondence, typically an email, in which the sender requests personal information of the target, often masquerading as an official agency such as the IRS. To protect personal information from these phishing scams, users must be vigilant and educated of the signs of phishing scams.
- Be wary of images such as logos or color schemes that appear similar to a branded company or agency, but contain differences that the consumer eye may not immediately notice.
- Be wary of any unsolicited communication from a corporation or a federal office.
- Refrain from clicking on any images or hyperlinks in the emails as they could contain malignant viruses that can infect your devices.
- When in doubt, just delete.
Social media scams
Social media connects billions of people in seconds—a feat unlike anything we’ve seen in the history of mankind—but this is also how scammers can connect to their targets on a personal level in the interest of stealing their information.
- Scammers can use hidden URLs by virtue of tools that shorten hyperlinks, thereby obscuring the destination. This can lead to malware being surreptitiously downloaded onto your device.
- Other forms of these scams include a bait-and-switch operation in which answering questions to a personality quiz can be used against you to steal your information.
Remember to always keep your anti-malware and anti-spyware protections up to date so that your devices have a first line of defense in preventing cyber fraud. If you have been the victim of cyber fraud, contact Lauth today for a free consultation on how we can help you find the criminals responsible at 317-951-1100, or visit us online at www.lauthinveststg.wpengine.com.