This is the final post in my ‘Identity Theft series’. I hope you enjoyed reading previous posts and that you were able to glean insights from them. Find the full series under “Identity Theft- Series” category. Happy Reading!
Types of Identity Theft You May Not Have Thought Of
Many people make mistakes every single day where identity theft risk is concerned. It is rather easy, really, to put yourself at risk. In part this is because people want to be trusting of their fellow man. Another reason is because there are some types of identity theft methods you simply weren’t aware of. Here are some of the more unusual types of identity theft problems and situations that you must know about:
Most people have heard of pickpockets, but you may not have heard of electronic pickpockets. Among the most serious types of identity theft, this one can happen if you carry credit card in your wallet. (crazy, right?)Not all credit cards are subject to this kind of theft though.
If your card has a Wifi signal on it, it’s an RFID card, or radio frequency identification card. It allows you to scan your card at the point of sale, but it also allows people with the right equipment to get your information—right through your wallet or pocket. The good news is that not all of your information is shared on a radio frequency. For example, your credit card number might be shared, but not your CVV code.
The fact that not all of your information is shared is a good thing, but shouldn’t be a reason for you to avoid being cautious. Identity theft occurs because various information is taken from different sources and then pieced together by opportunistic thieves. Your best bet is to keep your credit cards in an aluminum wallet. You can also wrap them in foil. This helps scramble the signal so thieves can’t access it.
Sharing Information Online
Whether you are applying for a job or messing around on Facebook, it’s a good idea to limit how much information you share online. Make sure you are working with a reputable company before you fill out any papers that may provide some or all of your personal information. Never share personal information in emails either. Most emails are not encrypted and are fairly easy for hackers to get into. A great password is only going to protect you so much, so don’t count on that as your only layer of protection.
It’s too bad that you have to do things like give your online friends the wrong birthday to protect yourself, but the world has changed quite a bit in recent decades. This is the era of information. You have access to just about any kind of information you want… but so do thieves. Thieves are lazy enough to prefer to take your money instead of earning their own, but they also like to challenge themselves by learning new ways to steal from you. Don’t make it easy for them. Shred your mail, modify and protect your online information, and keep your private life private.
With the most recent scare on Heartbleed bug, it is more important than ever to limit the amount of personal information we share online. The worst part of this newly emerged threat is that, we won’t even know whether our information is stolen or compromised until an attack on our personal information or identity happens.
I am pretty sure there are tons of types of identity theft left out there that I haven’t covered here in the series. But that gives us plenty of reasons to be always careful about protecting our personal information and thereby our identities at all times. I hope you found my posts helpful and that it gives you encouragement to err on the side of caution rather than to fall victim to this stigma we call ‘Identity Theft’.