Excerpted from Every Monday Matters by Matthew Emerzian and Kelly Bozza
September 12, 2009
The emotional impact of Internet identity fraud has been found to parallel that of victims of violent crime. Remain cyber-safe by protecting your computer as if it were your wallet. Practice safe surfing. You'll be glad you did.
Create a password that has a combination of upper- and lowercase letters, numbers, and symbols for unlocking your computer and for accessing websites. Use a different password for each site.
Never use an automatic log-in feature that saves your username and password.
Always log off the Internet or your computer when you're finished.
Avoid storing financial information on your computer.
Find and use anti-virus software and a firewall.
Do not open e-mails sent to you by strangers.
Forward spam that is phishing for information to email@example.com and to the company, bank, or organization impersonated in the phishing e-mail.
Order a free credit report every 12 months.
81% of all households have a computer.
75% of those households have Internet access.
11% of identity theft information is obtained online.
Over 300,000 phishing emails are reported annually. (Phishing is a scam where Internet fraudsters send an e-mail or pop-up messages to a user falsely claiming to be an established legitimate enterprise in an effort to steal the user’s personal and financial information.)
3.1 days is the average life span of a phishing web site.
Over 1 million adult Internet users experience Internet identity fraud annually—2,983 a day.