5 Ways to Prevent Private Data Leakage Online
Identity theft is a dangerous crime relatively easy to commit using someone’s private information found online. The criminal can open bank accounts or even take loans under their victim’s name, or use their identity for unpleasant or even illegal purposes.
Personal data theft became very simple to realize in the modern world. An intruder doesn’t even need to leave their home: all the instruments and sources required to commit that crime are available online for free.
For me, this means that personal data protection is even more relevant and important that it used to be several years ago. I’m worried about my sensitive information even while asking pros to help me with my homework, despite the fact that such services are mostly authorized by payment system operators.
Obviously, the best way to prevent personal details leakage online is to refuse using the worldwide web at all. But let’s be honest: it’s just impossible in 2020.
So, here are some tips for you to protect your identity and avoid personal data leakage or theft when going online.
1. Caution: Phishing Websites
Phishing sites are web-resources pretending to be legit but being fake. Their purpose is to steal one’s personal information, such as a login name and password, or a credit card number, for instance.
You should be especially attentive when the website requests the following info:
- Credit card number;
- Bank account number;
- Driver license data;
- Home address and phone.
There are cases when the request is completely legit, but it is always good to check the legitimacy of such sites twice.
To reveal that the website is a phishing one and avoid following the fraud requests, you should clarify the web address spelling (from the first to the last symbol straight). A single wrong letter in the URL (“facedook” instead of “facebook”) means the website should be recognized as suspicious.
2. Latest Antivirus Databases
Malware apps like backdoor and keyboard spies can cause severe damage to your computer and identity as well. It is possible to protect your system from those applications with the use of modern up-to-date antiviruses. The best solution is to use both the antivirus and anti-malware software.
3. One Website – One Password
One of the most frequent tricks on personal data theft by the criminal is the use of the same email address and password to access the victim’s accounts on various web resources. In case the victim uses the same password for different websites, one site hacked means the intruder gets access to multiple accounts at a time.
A reliable password is the first step to avoid personal data leakage. It is easier to memorize passwords with the use of special apps or online service solutions, such as Keepass or Lastpass.
4. Credit History Monitoring
Banks may provide data on a person’s credit history. Try keeping an eye on that info to make sure that no unknown loan is registered using your name.
5. Reliable Software Sources Only
By installing suspicious software, you make your computer vulnerable for hacks. It is especially dangerous to download and install pirated games, screensavers, “cracks”, etc. Most frequently, websites distributing such software do spread viruses at the same time.