6 ways to protect yourself from identity theft

Identity thieves can get personal information by hacking phones or computers, sending spam emails or SMS.

Some victims are never aware of the fact that their personal details are used for such crimes.

There are so many ways identity thieves can get access to people's personal information. They can get personal information by hacking a phone or computer, send spam emails or SMS, stolen or misplaced wallet and atm card or receipt and so many other means.

Once they get to access your personal information, identity thieves can buy or transfer funds from your bank account to an unknown account.

With the birth of the internet, it is actually tough to protect all your details but you can take these simple steps to protect yourself from identity theft.

1. Be careful what you share

With the increase of engagement on social media, we don't know who is who.

A lot of personal information is being shared on social media and the internet in general. So be careful the amount of information you put out there to the public. Never post personal information online.

2. Create Strong Passwords

Most people use easy passwords for their phones, computer, and social media platforms.

Never use easy to guess passwords like your date of birth, mother maidens name and the rest.

Create strong passwords that can't be easily accessed. You could add non-alphabetical characters to make it harder to crack. Also, try to change your passwords frequently.

3. Beware of fraudulent messages

We all get scam emails and text messages.

Some of these email scams can claim to be from your bank asking you to give them some vital information or telling you to click a link.

The most recent one people get in Nigeria is about updating your BVN. You should beware of such emails and messages.

Once you see this kind of messages, delete them immediately or mark as spam. Any mistake clicking or responding to such emails or messages means you've already divulged confidential information

4. Do not leave your receipt behind

After you do a transaction either at the bank or at the mall, make sure you do not leave behind your receipt for any reason.

It might look like just a piece of little paper with little information, but if identity thieves get a hold of that little piece of paper, they can gain access to your bank account details.

5. Protect your personal and financial details

If you store your financial and personal details on your computer or phone, it is very important to protect your device by installing anti-virus and anti-spyware software.

Also on your mobile device be careful of the applications you download. Make sure the mobile applications you download are from reputable companies and also check their ratings before downloading.

6. Always check your bank report

You can always request for bank report on transactions carried out on your bank account. If there are any discrepancies you can always alert your bank about it, so they can track any suspicious activity.

If you feel there's any fishy move on your bank account, you can report to your bank and they can alert the police.

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