8 Ways to Protect Your Online Identity - BestCyberNews: Online News Presenter in the present world

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8 Ways to Protect Your Online Identity

Each year, millions of Americans are victims of data breaches. Credit card fraud alone has affected 41 percent of consumers over the last five years, according to Aite Group's 2014 Global Consumer Fraud Survey.

If you’ve done business with Home Depot, Target, Zaxby’s, J.P. Morgan, Best Buy or Goodwill, hackers may have stolen your identity or financial credentials. Cyber theft can be draining and costly, and people are often unaware they’ve been hit until a fraud protection site or financial institution notifies them.
Here eight ways to protect yourself from a data invasion down the road:
Never share username or passwords. I.T. is the exception to this rule, as they have to log in occasionally to fix an issue. In the event you have to share with I.T., change your password immediately after.
Change passwords every 60 days. This includes email, computer, network, bank sites, etc. If you have a mobile device attached to your email account, you’ll have to provide the new credentials to the account on that device.
Make your password minimum of 8 characters. Not only is using one uppercase character and a couple of numbers recommended, it’s usually required. Make it stronger by adding another special character. Example: P@ssword11. You should also use different security questions and passwords for different accounts – even Apple is implementing more security measures like these to keep hackers out of user accounts.
Do not store passwords on devices. If your device gets stolen, it‘ll be easy for the thief to access your accounts. Same goes for keeping your passwords in an old-school day planner. Instead, try storing in a password protected file or a location where no one can find them, like a safe.
Keep antivirus and antispyware software live, active, paid and up to date. Updated software can detect new threats that develop daily and also strengthen your overall Internet security.
Perform computer updates (from Microsoft and Apple) often.Scheduling these on your machine to run regularly ensures the latest enhancements are included on your system, making it harder for hackers to enter. This goes for traditional computers as well as mobile devices.
Be cautious of "social engineering" emails. Those that compel one to open the message and click a link may be a spyware attempt, unless it’s from a trusted source. By clicking on the link, your computer could install spyware, giving hackers easy access to your data.
Use a password manager. For those who struggle to remember passwords for various accounts, it’s okay to rely on a password manager, but use a good one. Dashlane is very secure and works well on multiple platforms.

By Patrick Tamburrino (DailyNews)