Identity theft is an increasingly worrying occurrence which can harm you immensely. Once you become a victim of identity theft, you become vulnerable as your entire information lies in the hands of the miscreants who can use it to their advantage. Here are six ways by which identity thieves can steal your information.
- Using credit cards online to unsecured sites – When you use your card to transact in an unsecured or dubious site, you become susceptible to identity theft. An unsecured site is easy for thieves to get access to and get your details. To prevent your details from being compromised, please use secured and known websites for payments. Refrain from sending your personal details or credit card details via email.
- Rob you while travelling – A thief can easily get hold of your credit cards and other items while you are travelling . Crooks are always on the prowl of travelers and a snatch here and a robbery there of hapless travelers’ wallets or bags containing cards is what they are expert at. There are prepaid travel credit cards available that can be utilized while on travel.
- Placing Skimmers & cameras at the ATM – Be guarded when you go to an ATM for making transactions. Check thoroughly if there is any camera installed by the thieves to record your information as you punch your ATM pin. There are skimmers that are placed inside ATM machines which can capture the information in the magnetic strip. This helps the thieves to generate a spurious card and use it to make purchases. Don’t use an ATM which seems to have been tinkered with.
- Retail store credit card machines – When you hand over your credit card or debit card to a store merchant for swiping, there is a possibility the thieves must have connived with the store person and placed a card reader of their own. This way after your card is swiped, the card reader gathers the data which goes to the wrongdoers. Using cash instead of cash is beneficial and prevents any such data compromise from taking place.
- Hacking of data at restaurants/supermarkets – Hackers can sometimes foray illegally into the ‘servers of a big restaurant or super market’s computer system and steal your data obtained from your credit card details. It is advisable to avoid any data compromise in such cases is to pay by cash instead of cards.
- Breaking into Mail – Thieves can also break into your mailbox to get your credit card bills, bank statements and other documents containing your personal information. You can opt for paperless statements to steer clear of any hard copy of your bills. If you still insist on paying your bills through the mail, let the mailman get the bills from you straight. This prevents the thieves from rummaging through the mailbox.
The wrongdoers are innovative enough to come out with new ideas of stealing data. What we can do to counter them is to follow the above guidelines and stay safe!
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