Thieves Want Your Identity, Not Your Gadgets

That new tablet you just purchased may be the greatest electronic gadget the world has ever seen. You can chat, surf, watch videos, and play your favorite online game all at the same time. But you need to realize that your new device may also cause more grief than you ever thought possible. If you're like most people, inside that tablet, or other device, are many pieces of information about you that a cyber-thief would love to have. Credit card numbers, bank account information, your address, phone number, and more. If someone gets access to your device, they may just be able to steal your identity and begin stealing your money as well. So if you're wondering, -How does identity theft happen?- Well, it can start right there.

Physical Security

Your electronic gadget is worth a lot of money. The theft of such devices is on the rise. Thieves are boldly stealing them right off tables in restaurants or maybe even while you're using it. But most of these thieves aren't really after the device--it's what's on the device that they want. They know that, for many people, these devices serve as their portable office. They contain everything, from business data to very personal information. Through accessing that information, thieves can gather enough information to steal your identity. If they are able to access your social security number, they can manipulate nearly all of your personal and financial information. Here are some tips you may want to consider.

Lock it up. Don't take your eye off that device for a moment. If you're at work, lock it in a desk drawer if you have to leave for a while--even just to get fresh cup of coffee.

Keep it out of sight. Don't leave it sitting on the table at a restaurant or bar. Some thieves will wait until you're distracted while others will take it from right in front of you.

Biometrics. Having a secure system on your gadget can also help protect your device. Passwords and other devices are good measures, but installing biometric devices that require your fingerprint to unlock the device are sure to frustrate any thief.

Change your password regularly. Don't use the same password for long periods of time, and don't use the same one for everything you need a password for. If they can crack one password, they can get access to everything.

Viruses and Malware

You might be wondering how to prevent identity theft. Be careful what sites you visit and what links you click on in your emails. Computer identity theft is becoming a serious problem around the world. Cyber-crooks are sending out emails that contain links to viruses and Trojans which can infect your computer or other device. These viruses may be able to spy on everything you do on your computer. If you open your online checking account, the spyware that you accidently downloaded can retrieve that information and send it to a cyber thief. The information these programs are looking for include account numbers, passwords, credit card numbers, and your social security number.

Operational Precautions

Using your device in the comfort of your home may seem safe enough, but it is possible that cyber thieves are trying to access your device even while you surf or watch a movie. Your home WiFi may seem secure, but cyber criminals are becoming more and more sophisticated. They can crack your home's WiFi security system rather easily. And of course, any time that you're online at a coffee shop using their unsecured WiFi, you are really putting your information at risk. Consider using only prepaid credit cards for making online purchases. That way, if someone has breached your WiFi's security system, thieves will only get access to a limited amount of money and information.

Electronic Gadgets are fun and convenient, but thieves like them too. Don't take unnecessary risks with your device. Remember, thieves are everywhere and they are watching everything you do. If you leave your device unattended for just a minute, it's just enough time for a thief to pick up that device and disappear with it. Once they have it, they probably have access to all the information it contains. What is the best ID theft protection? In most instances, just using common sense can go a long way in preventing identity theft.

Joy Mali is an active blogger who is fond of writing articles on identity theft and advising people how to identify the theft signs and prevent identity theft. Follow her on Twitter to know more on electronic gadgets may cause identity theft.

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