Although many people like to believe that it would never happen to them, anyone can become the victim of identity theft. The number of criminals who seek out personal data for financial gain is on the rise, and most people don't even know when or how they are vulnerable. When you want to keep yourself and your personal information safe from harm, then you need to learn the warning signs so that you can spot problems before it is too late. Here are just a few things to watch out for when it comes to keeping your information safe.
If your computer usually starts up and loads programs quickly but has recently slowed down, it could mean that you have unknowingly installed tracking software on your computer. These programs hide in normal software, but once installed, they will steal your sensitive data and send it to a remote server. The hacker will then access your information and use it to steal your identity. That is why most any tech professionals, such as those at Ottawa IT support, would advise you to keep your anti-virus software updated.
If you have noticed any unusual charges on your bank statement, you might feel tempted to ignore it. People often dismiss random charges, but doing so is a mistake. When a hacker first gains access to your credit or bank information, they will often make small purchases to determine whether the account is still active. If you notice any suspicious activity on your account, contact your bank right away. It is always better to be safe than sorry.
Weird Phone Calls
Have you recently received a phone call from your bank or financial institution regarding your personal information? If so, then call your bank back to verify that it was them who contacted you. If a criminal learns which bank you use, they can then fake their phone number and pretend to work for the bank. Using their cover, they will try to extract your account number. Hackers can also even pretend to be tech companies wanting to help. Whenever you see suspicious activity like that do all that you can to avoid it.
Drop in Credit Score
If you have great credit but have recently been declined for a credit card or bank loan, then it's time to check your credit score. Criminals will often use your information to take out loans in your name. When they don't make the payments, your credit rating will start to drop, so it's vital to report any unauthorized loans as soon as you notice them. If you wait too long to take action, then solving your problem and fixing your credit score becomes that much harder. Calling your bank in time might enable you to have the suspicious loans removed from your account.
Overall, having your personal and bank information stolen can happen to anyone. That is why it is essential for you to know the warning signs of suspicious activity. Make sure to do all that you can to learn more about tech security and teach your families so that you can avoid an unnecessary issues and keep your information safe.