Protect personal data to be able to ensure their own security
July 25, 2016 We pay bills online, shop online, take out loans and even date. During such activities, we are often asked to register an account and provide our personal data. However, the information provided may be intercepted or fall into the wrong hands, which can have very serious financial or legal consequences for us. Let’s look at the simplest ways to protect personal data to be able to ensure their own security. Check what our experts advise! The times when everyone was anonymous on the internet changed. Now every institution, company or government collects information about us. Usually, these data are needed to carry out their tasks more effectively. The best example is Google, which uses the collected information for marketing purposes and displays ads tailored to the potential preferences of each user. Google has implemented this solution thanks to, among others saving the history of searched phrases, scanning the content of e-mails and loading so-called “cookies”. When we use free online tools, we sometimes unwittingly agree to using our data for various purposes. Their circulation on the network allows, for example, sending advertising spam. Therefore, information about us becomes a kind of desirable commodity. Much more often, however, we give others access to our personal data. An example would be social networking sites, where we sign with the real name and surname, give phone number, place of residence, work, it also happens to make public your ID card or credit cards by issuing photos or sharing your own geolocation. Remember that any of this information may be misused by a fraudster or hacker. Therefore, we should use the network wisely so that unauthorized persons do not have access to sensitive information about us.
Protect your data so that you don’t have financial problems
Every Internet user should take care of the security of their personal data. Carefree and recklessness can result in financial or legal problems. Criminals have their own ways of getting rich by phishing basic data from unsuspecting people. One of the most common cases of scammers in which stolen data is used is to get a loan online. Lenders who grant quick loans via the Internet check the credibility of the information provided by the customer by transferring a symbolic amount from the borrower’s bank account to the account of the lending institution. Thanks to this, they can be sure that the customer’s identity has already been checked at least once when setting up a bank account. However, the bank can also be registered electronically, and all necessary documents can be obtained through a courier who is theoretically supposed to check the customer’s ID, but in practice often forgets about it. An account is therefore created, which means that the fraudster can apply for payday loans. Usually, 4-6 liabilities are incurred from one account, their total amount may be several or even several thousand zlotys. It seems that lenders should take care of checking their clients more closely and it is true, but it is not so clear. What counts for customers is the quick time in which they can take the amount they need, thanks to which non-bank loans quickly gained popularity among Poles. However, in such a short time, it is difficult to verify the information provided by the customer in a way other than a transfer from a bank account, which is why the loan companies decided to check the data in this way. By introducing more restrictions, lenders would make life harder for honest clients. That is why we should check loan companies and use reliable ones, and above all, keep an eye on our personal data.
So how do you protect yourself against frauds? The matter is simple! First of all, you should use your personal data sensibly. It is worth remembering not to post too much information on social networks, be cautious about acquaintances made via the internet and each time we register somewhere on the network, consider whether a given company is safe, what its opinion is and whether it is known. In the case of loan companies, it is worth using specialized tools such as the Internet loan comparison website – because they contain only proven companies from the Financial tech industry
6 rules for secure network use
- Keep anonymous. If you do not have to provide your personal data – do not do it, especially if you are on the site for the first time and you are not sure about its credibility. However, if you must – enter only the data required, leave the other fields blank. The principle is simple: the less information about you is online, the better.
- Do not share data with unknown people. Often, fraudsters obtain data ensuring that they are needed for the recruitment process for a job, for medical research or even obtaining information from unaware threats to people on dating sites. That is why it is worth to be very careful when sharing confidential data with unknown people.
- Use “strong” passwords. It’s important that your passwords are long and contain several categories of characters. You can choose between upper and lower case letters, numbers and special characters. Remember that the more categories we use, the more secure our password will be. In addition, try to use many combinations and do not forget to change them sporadically.
- Secure internet connection. Using public Wi-Fi networks in cafes or shopping malls is quite risky because hackers can also access them, who can easily capture our personal data. Therefore, to reduce the risk of data and money loss do not use websites that require logging in and providing confidential information.
- Use private mode in browsers. It is useful if you are using a computer that is accessible to other people. After the session, all its history and cookies are deleted. In addition, remember to log out of all websites after work.
- Safe use of the cloud. Many people use the cloud to access their data from anywhere in the world, but it’s worth remembering that we send data to an external server, so we can’t have a 100% guarantee that no one will have access to it. Therefore, try not to store important documents in the cloud, scans with confidential information, and if you decide to do so, use data encryption using special applications.
Our personal data is extremely valuable. We often forget about it, and there are many scammers who are waiting for our mistake. Therefore, it is wise to approach disclosing confidential information to unknown people and by registering on websites several times to consider whether it is safe to do so.