Technology continues to improve our lives and simplify everyday tasks, from shopping to banking. However, our digital lifestyles are a double-edged sword. Although technology makes our lives easier, it also presents new opportunities for cybercriminals.
It’s true. Scammers are using the COVID-19 pandemic to try to steal your money and personal information. If you know what to look for and a few key tips to follow when interacting with information online, you’ll be able to keep yourself safe! Read up on the most common scams affecting people today and learn what to watch out for.
Cybercriminals are continually working on new strategies to profit from stealing your credentials and even your identity, and they are continuing to refine forms of cyberattacks that have proved profitable in the past. That’s why the volume of phishing threats continues to grow.
Tax-related identity theft occurs when someone uses your stolen personal information, including your Social Security Number, to file a tax return claiming your refund. According to the IRS, reversing the damage caused by tax related identity theft can be a frustrating and complex process for victims. In addition, scammers will use tax season as an opportunity to commit fraud, pretending to be the IRS, and asking consumers for cash, or asking consumers to convert cash to gift cards which is an easy ways to transmit cash without the possibility of detection when the card is used. Protecting your identity is critical year-round but especially important during the busy tax season.
Identity theft is a constant in the news, not only because it is prevalent, but also because the consequences of identity theft can be serious. As soon as someone steals your identity, they can open credit cards, take out loans, or even sign for a mortgage in your name. Your best defense against identity theft is awareness, and understanding what to do if you become a victim.
Identity theft is back in the headlines. In July 2019, Capital One disclosed that 100 million credit card applications were compromised, including personal information such as birthdays, addresses, phone numbers, credit scores, and social security numbers. That was the same week that Equifax, one of the big three credit bureaus, reached a $700 million settlement with the federal government for the 2017 hack that exposed the sensitive data of 147 million Americans.