5 Mistakes You May be Making that Put Your Identity at Risk

With the massive data breach surrounding Target and credit card information being hacked, many people are looking at how to protect their information while conducting business online.  Below are five mistakes individuals make that put their identities at risk.

  1. Not updating the OS and Browser.  Experts say when you don’t update your operating system there are often critical security patches that are outdated, making devices vulnerable to fraud.
  2. Not being picky.  Everyone wants to get a good deal for their online purchase, but often they end up compromising their identity.  It is important that before you visit any website you check the security of the site before you click on it.
  3. Always using the same password.  It seems that there is a password for everything and often we use the same one in order to remember them.  One tip is to be sure you are not using the same password for your major bank accounts that you use for smaller less secure websites.
  4. Over-sharing on social media.  For added security many sites require you to answer a security question which is typically something personal about you.  With people sharing so much about themselves on social media and online in general, this information can be easily gained if you’re too forthcoming with information. Be sure you are watching what kind of information you are putting out for people to see.
  5. Using public Wi-Fi.  Public Wi-Fi hot spots are a convenient way to check email, social media and browse the internet, but they should not be used for conducting monetary business.  Many of these hot spots have minimal security and tend to be easy for scammers to hack and steal your information.  If you need to do any online banking or bill paying wait until you get home or use a secure service. 

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