A Tax Return Has Already Been Submitted With Your ID...
You might first wonder if you're dreaming; that you'd already sent the return and you were just being
silly and re-sending it in. In just a few seconds, memories of how so many people are finding that their identity has been compromised, you realize that you have now joined the ranks of those who have been a victim of tax return fraud.
This isn't the only kind of identity fraud out there and it's certainly not the most common.
Utility Fraud - With a good credit record, utilities, cable and telephone companies are more than happy to set someone up with an account in your name.
Benefit Fraud - Certainly a risk for those of the age where some benefits might be available.
Employment Fraud - Individuals with poor credit or criminal records collect compromised identities to start a new life; by trying to steal yours.
Bank Fraud - Going right in hand with Employment Fraud, they need somewhere to cash that paycheck; why not with your new account?
Why is one of your favorite IT companies mentioning the dangers of identity fraud? Technology is one of the biggest vulnerabilities to your identity. Your computer, smart phone, tablet, and those devices you use at work, school and in hotels and airports are all places where your identity can be exposed.
We're in the business of computer and network security and we have some tips to help you keep your identity safe.
- Make sure your computer has the latest updates for not just the operating system (Windows or Mac OS), but for important applications like Adobe Flash, Java, and Adobe Reader to name a few.
- Use antivirus programs and keep them up to date.
- Avoid "free" software, and look closely when installing software that other apps don't piggyback on.
- Be careful with email and avoid clicking links from any source which seems official or uncharacteristic.
- Use a link-scanning program like Web of Trust or Bit Defender Traffic Light to help avoid dangerous websites.
- Have your computer regularly scanned for malware and other risky software.
- Use complex passwords on all accounts including wireless access points.
This list can go on and on. Call us for a free 30 minute consultation about your security for your home or business. We can help you come up with a plan to protect your identity which is customized to your needs.
Wade Stewart is the Managing Member of Stewart and Son Computer Services, LLC in University Place, WA and serves as a trusted partner to many local small and medium sized businesses.
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Content Copyright Wade Stewart (C) 2015
Labels: advocacy, computer, customization, email, IT, managed services, networking, security, small business