5 Advanced Identity Theft Protection Tips in the Big Data Era

Anyone concerned about preventing identity theft in an era driven by big data should take these five steps.
identity theft and data breach
Shutterstock Licensed Photo - By MaximP

There are a lot of great things about living in an era governed by big data. Big data creates a lot of new opportunities in business and our personal lives.

However, there are also downsides to the sudden influx of data in the 21st Century. One major concern is that big data has made identity theft risks more significant.

Addressing the Risk of Identity Theft in a World Increasingly Dependent on Big Data

Your digital footprint is the accumulation of all of your activity on the internet. It’s everything from what you search for, to what you share, to what you pin. The more data you make public about yourself online, the easier it becomes for someone with ill intent to steal your identity and become you.

In the past, we talked about the debate as to whether data privacy is a right or privilege in the age of big data. However, maintaining as much data privacy as possible is a good way to reduce the risks of identity theft.

A hacker could create a fake social media account and friend you, or they could hack into your email account and steal your passwords. Fortunately, there are ways to protect yourself from this threat by mitigating the risks of having your data compromised.

Here, are some advanced identity theft protection tips & tricks.

Monitor your online identity

The nuanced truth is that big data is both a risk and an asset in the fight against identity theft. Although big data makes it easier for hackers to find your online identity, you can also use data analytics tools to identify these risks and take appropriate safeguards. One benefit is by monitoring your identity.

Netizens can be unaware that their social security number, address, and other personal information are floating about on the internet as a result of so many data breaches and online dumps of personally identifiable information until it’s too late.

When you use identity monitoring protection, like Identity Guard’s service, you’ll have access to a wide range of automatic capabilities, including dark web monitoring, which may alert you instantly if any of your information is compromised.

Identity Guard automatically monitors the web to catch your identity and personal information as soon as it is exposed. You may be a victim of fraud without even knowing it. Identity Guard provides instant alerts when your data is potentially compromised, giving you the chance to take measures to protect yourself.

Keep your social media safe

Social media data is a major risk if it is compromised. You have to protect this sensitive data from cybercriminals.

Social media is a valuable tool for opening up new business connections, or even befriending your favorite brand. But when you make your digital footprint public, someone can easily fake your identity and get access to the things that are most important to you. An easy way to do this is to steal your account credentials.

Unfortunately, it’s very easy to do, and it happens all the time. A compromised account can easily be replaced, so use caution and never share your login credentials with anyone. Pay special attention to your account pages for Gmail and Facebook.

From the account homepage on Gmail, scroll down to the bottom of the page. You should see a link to “Account Preferences.” Click this link. On Facebook, tap on the icon on the top right-hand side of the screen.

Monitor your credit scores

You have the right to three free credit reports each year from Experian, Transunion, and Equifax. These three credit agencies collaborate through AnnualCreditReport.com, which allows you to request all three reports at once. These tools use sophisticated data analytics algorithms to identity warning signs that your data has been compromised.

Check to see if there are any new credit cards, loans, or other transactions utilizing your information that you did not sign up for when monitoring your credit score. Take quick action against any questionable behavior.

Your credit card, for example, should be instantly frozen if it has been stolen or misused. Consumers have the right to a free credit freeze in the majority of U.S. states. In order to get your credit card reissued you will have to unfreeze your account and proceed with a replacement request. The credit freeze will prevent anyone from using or opening your account without your permission.

Update your software and use sandbox modes if you aren’t sure

Despite the fact that Microsoft and Apple often issue minor security fixes, your operating system is plagued with security vulnerabilities. They cannot account for everything, particularly how other software interacts with the OS architecture.

If a program, for example, requires access to critical system files, Windows often requires it to be run in Administrator Mode. However, many users just provide administrator privileges to any application installation, which is not a good system administration practice.

It’s a good practice to avoid using the admin account on your computer unless absolutely essential. Allow security updates to download and install automatically, even if it’s inconvenient, such as when your computer wants to reboot in the middle of a Netflix marathon.

Try running apps that require administrator privileges in a sandbox environment, such as one provided by trustworthy antivirus software.

Use temporary throwaway email accounts

Even while internet security has significantly improved over the years, there is still a chance that some websites may be hacked, which means that if you join these websites, your personal information may end up in the wrong hands.

When you sign up for several websites, you expose yourself to digital crimes such as fraud and identity theft. You will not be required to provide any personal information when engaging or transacting using a temporary email.

You should use TempMail.org to create anonymous accounts. It gives you a completely random temporary mailbox that you can only use for that purpose. Because most websites only require email verification once, it’s conceivable you’ll never use it again.

Ryan Kh
Ryan Kh is an experienced blogger, digital content & social marketer. Founder of Catalyst For Business and contributor to search giants like Yahoo Finance, MSN. He is passionate about covering topics like big data, business intelligence, startups & entrepreneurship. Email: ryankh14@icloud.com