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Protect Yourself

Your PC Can Help

Your PC can be an effective tool in keeping your identity safe and sound. Here are a few words of wisdom for protecting your personal information:

  • Update Computer Software - Install and regularly update firewall, browser, security, anti-spyware and anti-virus software on your personal computer and ensure your operating system is up to date to protect against the latest threats.
  • Change and Strengthen Passwords - Throw out your old passwords and create new ones that combine letters, numbers and symbols.
  • Bank Online - Banking online allows you to frequently monitor your account balances, which can help you resolve and recover from potential fraud quickly. If you already use online banking, be sure to set up e-mail and mobile alerts.
  • View and Pay Bills Online - Take online banking one step further and receive your bills at your bankís or credit unionís website. These electronic versions of your bills, or eBills, will keep personal information out of your mailbox.
  • Secure Wireless Networks - If you use a wireless network at home, make sure to password protect it so that others canít access your Internet service on your dime, or hack into your network.
  • Activate Credit Monitoring Alerts - You can check your credit report online once per year, or use a credit monitoring service that proactively alerts you when inquiries have been made or accounts opened.

And donít forget to backup up your computer so you'll always have those important documents, files and programs on hand. Use a separate hard drive to store your backup or an online backup service.

"Move your financial transactions online by turning off paper invoices, statements and checks, including paychecks, and replacing them with electronic versions where offered by employers, banks, utilities or merchants. Avoid mailing checks to pay bills or deposit funds in your banking account. Instead, pay bills online and use remote deposit check imaging services on online banking sites."
~ Javelin Strategy & Research, Safety Tips to Protect Consumers from Identity Fraud