Nothing has more fun and a bonded feeling of technology freedom than shopping online at the comfort of your house. Nevertheless, do you know online shopping at times makes you vulnerable for online fraud and identity theft? Yeah, online identity theft is any deception that yields a loss of personal data such as usernames, passwords, among others. Astonishingly, Online Application for social security card is a victim for hackers, whereby they use your information to make unapproved sales. In extreme cases, this can rock your financial accounts or end up in jail. The frightening reality of identity fraud is that it can happen to anyone. However, to head off the identity theft possibilities, below are some ideal tactics to stay ahead of the online shopping hackers.
- Know The Business Sites You Shop At
Some online shopping sites are fabricated by people who want your details. Besides, hackers have unbeaten their skills by plagiarizing web destinations that look like a legitimate store. To renounce such cyber-attacks, ensure you browse through a reputed search engine such as Google. Confirm the URL and check for unusual long strings of numbers and letters.
- Confirm Site’s Encryption Security
There are two most effective techniques for verifying a website’s security. The most predominant one is evaluating the URL, whether it starts with https://. Nowadays, a vast number of online selling companies are shifting to https. The second security verification is authenticating a universal symbol that resembles a lock and mostly appears either next to the URL or at the bottom corner of the web browser.
- Avoid Free Public Networks
Public unencrypted networks facilitate online hackers in intercepting and capturing your personal information if you use the networks. Despite running regular virus checks on your hardware, you may never be sure whether a community network is free from malware. However, to be safe, it’s advisable you use your private network. The unique VPN on your network encrypts your personal data blocking any external access into it.
- Go For Credit Payment Options Over Debit Payment
Credit cards offer an advanced level of fraud protection, which is uncommon with debit cards. Credit card providers are always at the forefront in noticing identity theft even before the user realizes it. If getting into debt sounds challenging to you, you can opt for a cash-loaded disposable gift card.
- Don’t Store Payment Information Under Saved Password In Your Google Account
Some of the online sellers may persuade you to store your credit card information in their system. However, don’t be lured by a quick shopping process as it can cost you a fortune. With the influx of data breaches, such stored information can be a threat in compromising your identity. Instead of storing your information on a server, you have zero control, do it manually, and be conversant with your identity protection.
- Use Reputable Third-Party Payment Methods
Third-party programs such as PayPal or Google pay can be an impeccable technique in grounding the level of online purchases security. They deny the vendors from having your credit card number details. Unfortunately, no matter how safe they are, never save your payment information on such programs. If by any chance, hackers gain access to the data, they will use personal information to impersonate you online.
- Use Disposable Prepaid Credit
Using a disposable credit card is wise, contrary to a credit card. A disposable credit works similarly with gift cards whereby you load it with the specified amount until it gets exhausted. If by bad luck, the disposable card is stolen, the criminals can’t gain access to anything more than the balance in the card.
- Go for Credit Card With Select Security Features
Some credit cards have unique features that offer high financial security guarantees. For example, you may be provided with a special temporary card number for purchases only. Neither the business nor hackers can have access to the originally issued number of a credit card by the service provider. However, some of the credit cards have set account alerts to inform you in case of a suspicious purchase.
- Strong And Secure Passwords
Weak passwords are a hacker’s happiness and those who use similar passwords for a multitude of accounts. Once a hacker familiarizes you with your passwords, they can wreak your financial accounts and have access to your personalized information. Longer passwords that do not reflect your personal information, such as birthdate and age, are the most ideal for securing your identity. Besides, password managers and two-factor authentications go handy with securing your accounts.
- Stay Alert
You should be abreast in checking out for identity theft signs such as inappropriate credit report information such as incompetent social security number among others, missing or delayed bills. They may indicate your account has been hijacked to enhance you, change the billing address and hide the fraud. There is also being sent a credit card that you didn’t apply or receiving calls and alerts of past-due bills for unknown products.
What to Do if You Suspect Identity Fraud
Online hackers often work as fast as possible to rack up charges before the victim discovers what has happened. If you think you have been scammed online, supplement these steps regardless of identity theft.
- Report to the Federal Trade Commission
Normally, they will provide you with a personal recovery plan. Besides, since this is a police case, they will issue you with an affidavit to report. You can as well as create an FTC account to guide you through the recovery step.
- Change Your Passwords
Upon suspecting identity fraud, immediately change your compromised account’s password. Update your password with the responsible financial institution handling the compromised account. This protects you from wreak havoc to your accounts if perhaps the fraudster had obtained your login information.
- Freeze Your Credit
This curbs any new credit lines that may be applied afresh with your personal details. However, if you may feel the urge to own another credit card, get in touch with bureaus to unfreeze the account details. However, you can switch on or switch off the credit file in locking freeze information.
- Monitor Your Credit
Be apt on your Online Application for a social security card to make sure there is no advanced unauthorized activity that happens.
- Contact One Of The Credit Bureaus
Once you inform one of the bureaus, a fraud alert is placed on your credit report, and the bureau informs the other two. This encourages creditors to verify their information before approving a new credit application. This service lasts for one year; however, it can be extended only after providing the necessary documents such as police reports.
- Contact Your Card Issuer
The sooner you inform your card issuer of the incident, the faster they will cancel the compromised card or account. Moreover, they will help you in fraud investigation and remove any fraudulent charges.
Don’t let online shopping benefits lull you into complacency; always take your time during and try Online Application for a replacement social security card. The majority of fraudsters go after those who fail to protect their financial details online authentically.