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Keeping Your Identity Safe

More and more people are shopping and banking online. Scammers send out phishing emails saying you need to log into your bank account to update information with the plan to capture your log in credentials. No one should ask for your password. You can forward the email to the bank they are claiming to be from so they can be caught.

Here are other tips to keep your identity safe while you are shopping or banking online.

  • A criminal can make an email or a phone call look like it is coming from a legitimate business, or from someone at work, or even a friend you have in your contact list. If it seems unusual, be skeptical and contact them directly to check out if it came from them. Do not open attachments unless you are expecting them. It can release a virus that grabs information from your device.
  • When making a purchase online, the website’s http URL should end with S: https, the s means it is a secure, encrypted site.
  • Do not access internet sites involving transactions or banking on a public wifi, or by using a public or work computer.
  • Make sure your home router has a strong password to access it, and better yet, do transactions or sharing of information on a wired computer, if possible.
  • Be wary of Facebook posts asking for typical security questions even if it is from a friend who posted it for fun or curiosity, e.g. mother’s maiden name, name of first pet, etc. Someone could gather information.
  • Monitor your credit card transactions for charges you did not make. Contact the bank immediately if there is a problem.
  • Be careful when using ATM’s or gas station pay at the pump. Thieves can attach devices to read the inserted card. If the machine that accepts your card looks like it isn’t well assembled, ask an employee to check it.

Lastly, keep your devices’ software current. Security patches are continually being released to thwart identified threats. If you feel vulnerable, there are services that monitor your credit to protect your identity. It could be worth subscribing.

 

The Lord’s acts of mercy are not exhausted, His compassion is not spent; They are renewed each morning – great is Your faithfulness! Lamentations 3: 22-23

 

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