We live in the digital sphere these days, and online channels take up a large chunk of our daily lives. We use apps for nearly everything, from communication with friends and families to handling finances. While this has made life significantly easier, it has also made us more vulnerable than ever.
Unlike your personal possessions, you cannot physically protect your online assets, and they are likely to remain under threat unless certain security measures are taken. Even if you apply a range of security measures to protect your online assets, you cannot expect it to be entirely risk-free and should always be on guard.
This article is primarily about protecting your identity, considering that identity theft can lead to huge financial losses, and it takes a lot of effort to recover access to your digital assets. Here is a list of ways technology can help protect your identity both in the real world and the digital sphere.
Use A Password Manager
Using one password for all online accounts is the most terrible mistake you can make. If a person learns about your password, they can access everything through it. You want to avoid that at all costs. But at the same time, one is prone to forgetfulness, and there is a great chance that you might forget the password to one service or another. Yes, you can write it down somewhere, but if you lose access to that, you will have a hard time recovering your account. A password manager can be useful in this regard. It can help you store your credentials in one place in an encrypted manner.
Secure Your Username
You might need a random username to secure a banking channel or so. You can use a generator to create random username to disguise your account. Even when it comes to sensitive channels, people tend to use simple usernames, which is a recipe for disaster because it makes it easier for hackers to gain access to your account. Since banking channels are not indexed on Google or publicly visible, there is a low chance of them finding out your username. So, you should ideally stick to a random one to secure your account.
Review Your Bank Statement
You should make it a habit to review your bank statement regularly. Not only does it help you stay aware of your finances, which is a good habit in itself, but it also helps you spot any suspicious transactions that might have been made through your account. If you spot any suspicious transaction, you can immediately report it to your bank for investigation. You can also take certain measures to ensure that your account remains safe in the future.
Setting Up Fraud Alerts
Even if you review your bank statement regularly, you still need to do more to prevent financial crimes. One way of doing this is by setting up fraud alerts. If your bank detects any suspicious transaction, it can immediately send you a fraud alert on your phone. If you confirm that you did not make the transaction, your bank can help you block it or launch an investigation into the incident. This can be significantly helpful in securing your financial channels. However, some everyday actions can also trigger fraud alerts.
Secure Physical Documents
Many people habitually throw sensitive documents in their drawers, only to forget that they have left them there. These documents are declared sensitive for a reason. You do not want anyone to have access to them. This includes canceled cheques and bank statements. If you have no use for them, it is better to shred them before discarding them. The same goes for anything that contains personal information. Even if it is something as simple as a photograph, you need to secure it to prevent anyone from creating a fake identity card. If you do not want to shred these documents, it is best that you keep them in a safe space, preferably a locker.
Use Antivirus To Secure Your Computer
Even if you have a strong security regime in place, you should know that nothing is foolproof. Therefore, your best bet is to set up layers of security. One layer is setting up an antivirus to protect your computer from viruses and malware. Sometimes these two are so discreet that you probably would not spot them anywhere, but they would easily steal your data. You want to avoid this at all costs. If you have sensitive data on your computer, you need to invest in a good antivirus.
The aforementioned tips can help you secure your identity. However, it is worth reiterating here that nothing is foolproof. Your best bet is to build layers of security around your physical and online identity to ensure that there are no breaches. It is also a good exercise to routinely check these security measures to spot suspicious activities and to see if any improvement is required.