Your identity is your most valuable asset – protect it



Consider these stats.*

  • In 2017, a record-high 16.7 million Americans were victims of identity fraud.
  • 30% of U.S. consumers were exposed to data breaches – an increase of 12 percent from the previous year
  • For the first time, more Social Security numbers were exposed than credit card numbers.

Your identity is an asset – as valuable as cash in hand – and it can be easily compromised through theft or a data breach. One of the first steps to protecting yourself is to determine your level of risk. The ID RiskCompass, powered by CyberScout, is an easy-to-use tool that evaluates whether you are effectively protecting your personally identifiable information. It also provides tips on how to better safeguard your identity and shield yourself from potential risk.

Here are four privacy data tips CyberScout recommends you jump on immediately to protect your identity and finances.

  1. Check your privacy settings on social media. Check your accounts and make sure you’re not sharing anything with the public that could expose you to identity theft or worse. Keep answers to your security questions off of Facebook, don’t share upcoming travel plans and, more generally, don’t overshare. The more information you make public, the easier a target you are.
  2. Close your old online accounts. Do you have old profiles you haven’t used in years? Do a little spring cleaning on old accounts you don’t use anymore. If any of them have the same passwords as any current accounts, close those too, while you’re at it.
  3. Enable 2-Factor Authentication on everything. It’s a good idea to connect your online accounts to a cell phone or an authentication app.
  4. Create a burner email account for non-essentials. Ad trackers compile and share data on your browsing history as well as your purchases both on- and offline. Creating separate email accounts for your online shopping can provide a modicum of separation and privacy. It’s not foolproof, but it’s a free and easy way to split the data you’re unwittingly providing online.

These tips are a great place to start, but don’t stop there. Identity thieves are unrelenting – you should be, too. Visit horacemann.myideducation.com for additional identity protection tips and resources, including the ID RiskCompass.

*Javelin Strategy & Research - 2018 Identity Fraud: Fraud Enters a New Era of Complexity


WBTL-0727 (Feb. 19)

© 2017 Horace Mann Educators Corporation

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