Identity theft is a quite prevalent form of online crime that has become more sophisticated and complex these days. When a hacker gets access to your personal information, such as name, password, social security number (SSN), credit card or bank account details, he can use it for a myriad of malicious purposes. These may include breaching your online banking account, committing online frauds in your name or selling your credentials further.
In order to protect yourself from identity theft, it is important to understand the different ways in which the attack is generally carried out.
- Keylogging: This type of identity theft involves installing a malware on the target user’s computer system. Whenever the user logs into an online account or carries out financial transactions, the malware records the keystrokes and transmits them to the hacker.
- Phishing: The hacker may send a fake email to the user or display pop-up advertizements while browsing the internet. The email is spoofed to have come from a credible organization, such as a bank, and requires the user to take an immediate action. This may include downloading a software, visiting a website or filling out an online form.
- Data Breach: Identity theft may also occur when hacker gains unauthorized access to the sensitive information while it is being shared over the internet, particularly unsecure networks. Packet sniffers may be used to view and steal the user’s financial information. Apart from this, spying, denial-of-service attacks, man-in-the-middle attacks and other such techniques may be used.
Tips To Prevent Identity Theft
- Install Security Software: Make sure you install anti-malware, anti-spyware and other security software in your computer as well as mobile devices. These will help to identify and delete the malicious programs or files from the system. You should also enable firewall to monitor and block any suspicious traffic from accessing your network.
- Follow Proper Security Measures: You should follow the best security practices while accessing the internet, particularly on public Wi-Fi networks. Do not log in to your banking and email accounts or shop online when connected to an unsecure network.
- Guard Against Phishing Attempts: Do not open or download attachments from emails that come from an unknown sender. Also, you should not share your personal or financial information or click on a link embedded in such emails.
For more tips on protecting yourself against online identity theft, you can contact Centex Technologies at (972) 375 – 9654.