Northwest Iowa — Most people think about protecting themselves from identity theft, but most don’t get around to doing anything to protect themselves. A financial advisor says you can — and should — do more to protect yourself from identity theft.
Mike Cetera, with the banking industry website Bankrate-dot-com, says a new report shows 77-percent of Americans are afraid of identity theft, but many aren’t taking the actions needed to reduce the risks. Cetera says inexpensive “fixes” can help to prevent the crime.
A recent data breach involved the head of the C-I-A, whose personal email account was hacked, revealing a list of email addresses and Social Security numbers. As that case demonstrates, Cetera says it’s impossible to cover all of your bases.
If you’re planning to use your smart phone, laptop or tablet at a coffee shop or some other public place, he says to never use an unsecured wi-fi network. Cetera says it’s a good idea to check your credit report at least twice a year.
You can help protect yourself from I-D thieves by using different passwords for all of online accounts — and changing them frequently.