The one thing that you should worry about when you surf the web or doing any online activity is identity theft. If you are careless about giving away your real identity online, there is a chance that your identity will be misused by the party that you are giving it to. So, whatever website or company that asks you to fill your identity online, such as your name, address, date of birth, mother’s name, credit card information, and so on, you need to be careful only to give such information to a trustworthy website or company.
If any random person asks you about your information online, don’t give it to them simply because you don’t know how they will use your information. Also, when filling your information online, make sure that you do it on a secure website with a standard encryption system. Otherwise, your information might get stolen by any irresponsible third parties. It is very important for you to keep your identity safe online. Here are 7 ways to protect your online identity from identity thefts:
1. Do Not Give Your Identity In Response To Any Suspicious Email
Most of identity theft victims got their identity stolen through a phishing, suspicious, or spam email. When they got the suspicious email that claimed to be from a trustworthy company or organization, they didn’t confirm whether it is truly from such a reputable company. As a result, the victims just sent back their identity information to those scammers, and then their identity got stolen. The first thing that you need to do after receiving such type of email is to confirm whether it is sent by a reputable sender. Also, you should not give your identity at all in response to such suspicious email.
2. Do Not Give Your Identity To Any Suspicious Person Online
When using a social media platform, you will often get messaged by some strangers that asked you about your personal information. They tend to look friendly and they ask many questions about you, such as your name, where you live, your occupation, how many family members that you have, and so on. You have to be very careful in communicating with such people. There are lots of stalkers and scammers in social media, so you have to communicate only with the people that you know. Never give any detailed personal information to any stranger or suspicious person online.
3. Make Sure That The Website Is Encrypted
When you are asked to fill your personal information on any website, you have to ensure that such website is a legitimate website. If that website is a phishing website, then your information will get straight to the scammers or hackers behind that website. Make sure that you can see the encryption sign on the browser address bar when you access that website. The green lock symbol is the sign that the website is encrypted, and it is also the sign that it is a legitimate website. In that case, you can safely fill your personal information and submit it to the website.
4. Use A VPN Connection To Encrypt Your Data Transmission
Most cases of identity theft are done by exploiting the weakness of the victim’s network connection. So, if you are connecting to a WiFi that is not using any type of encryption or protection system, it can easily get hacked. The hackers can steal your information by intercepting the data transmission that you do online as well as any files or data that are being transmitted. To prevent this, you should use a VPN connection to encrypt all data transmissions that you do online.
5. Don’t Share Your Personal Information On Social Media
While social media usually has the “About You” section that allows you to fill your personal information, it is not recommended for you to reveal too much information in the “About You” section. Also, you can set the privacy settings so that only the people that you trust can see your personal information on social media. More importantly, it is not recommended for you to share your personal information through your post since it can be read by anyone online, which is very risky for your online privacy.
6. Don’t Fill Any Important Information Using A Public WiFi Network
While public WiFi networks can give you convenience for having a high-speed internet access for free, it is supposed to be used only for light browsing. You should never use a public WiFi network to access your bank information or send any personal information online. This is because public WiFi networks are heavily monitored, and hackers are usually lurking on public WiFi networks to steal the information of their victims. Unless if you use a VPN, do not send any important information online.
7. Manage All Your Passwords Properly
Last but not least, it is very important for you to manage all your passwords properly. You should use a password manager software to manage all passwords for your accounts since it is better to use different passwords rather than the same passwords for different accounts. The hackers can steal your passwords if you are not careful with your online security, and once it happens, all personal information that you have stored in your account can be stolen as well. So, you should strengthen the passwords for all accounts and make sure that you can manage them properly with a good password manager software.
Those are the 7 ways to protect your online identity from identity thefts. The less you give them the opportunity to steal your personal information, the more difficult it is for them to perform their cyber crimes. So, make sure to be vigilant in all your online activities.