People online are not always who they say they are, social media platforms are giving strangers way too much information about you and what are you doing about it?
You need to buck up my friend; fact is every three seconds someone’s identity is stolen, ask yourself, how at risk am I?
Here are six useful tips on how you can protect your identity online…
Keep your personal details to yourself
Your date of birth, full name, location, phone number, favourite bands, books and taste in music are all details which can give hackers more knowledge about who you are. Your ‘About me’ section on social media doesn’t need to be your life story, keep it short, sweet and harder for fake friends to make out like they know you.
Password12345 just ain’t gonna cut it anymore. Always pay attention to the message that tells you your password is weak, that’s your warning that a hacker is going to have a field day being able to easily access your account and any other account in your name with the same password. The rule is, if they’re easy to remember, they’re easy to crack.
Check your privacy settings
This check should be carried out on your social media accounts as well as your phone. On your mobile turn off your GPS location settings and your Bluetooth when it’s not necessary for them to be on. As for social platforms like Facebook, to secure your profile, change settings to ‘Friends only’ for all your posts.
Look out for spam emails
I recently got caught out myself…Now they’re getting more sophisticated. Never respond to any emails with account info or passwords. Banks will never ever ask for your information in this way. If in doubt, call the bank directly to check or, better still, delete the email.
Keep a close eye on your bank statements
Just because you are a teenager with minimal bills you should still cross check your receipts with the payment history on their statements. Always keep an eye out for any unfamiliar transactions to recipients and direct debits you’ve never recalled making or setting up.
Monitor post you get through your front door
This is one of the most important checks to make on this list. I used to be so blasé about checking my letters until an unforeseen circumstance meant that I had to. I have often heard people say things like, I received a brand new box of DVD’s that I hadn’t ordered in the post today…When I ask did you return them or phone the company to make a query about the order…The usual response is “No, I just kept the products.” RED ALERT. Be VERY suspicious of anything you have no recollection of purchasing in the post, especially pre-approved credit cards you’ve not applied for, letters about direct debits and other financial offers.
Cover photo: weheartit