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Identity theft is real!

How do I know? It happened to me.

And I pride myself on thorough online security.


My physical identity got stolen along with my handbag and AirPods back in 2022 😭 I replaced everything and reported credit card misuse. I replaced everything and reported credit card misuse, but my stolen documents ended up being sold on the black market, resulting in tens of thousands of dollars in unpaid debts on my credit file. It's been a challenging ordeal to sort through, and I wouldn't wish it upon anyone (except perhaps the frauds themselves!!).


online security identity fraud protect yourself

Don’t wait for it to happen to you.

PROTECT YOURSELF NOW:

  • SIGNUP 1PASSWORD 1️⃣  an encrypted password and life filing system with inbuilt one-time password capability, otherwise known as 2 Factor Authentication (2FA) ~ for use on phones, tablets and computers (Mac & PC friendly) with easy syncing. The remaining steps will be easier to do if point 1 is actioned.

  • STOP REUSING PASSWORDS 🛑 This leaves you wide open for online fraud. Annoying I know, but simpler with an encrypted password storage system!

  • CHANGE YOUR PASSWORDS 🔒 longer passwords are safer (16-20 characters) with a mix of all-caps, lowercase, numbers and symbols - random passwords are best!

  • ADD 2 FACTOR AUTHENTICATION (2FA) 🔑 wherever possible. Download Google Authenticator, Microsoft Authenticator, 1Password (or another trusted authenticator app) to store one-time passwords.

  • AVOID USING FREE EMAIL ADDRESSES FOR BUSINESSES  📧 i.e. @gmail @hotmail @bigpond etc ~ Instead, link your business to a verified domain such as name@yourbusiness.com.au (you can still use gmail as the provider for this).

  • DOWNLOAD YOUR CREDIT FILE 💲 Verify details at Equifax, Illion and Experian ~ make sure all financial inquiries, debts, employer and personal details are correct and belong to you (this is how I found out what was happening to me!) 

  • LOCK YOUR CREDIT RECORD 🏴‍☠️ to prevent unauthorized access. You can do this at equifax.com.au/ban free of charge. Extend the ban. Remember to lift the ban before legitimately applying for credit cards, loans or telco plans yourself.


LEAVE YOUR HANDBAG & WALLET AT HOME 👜 avoid carrying unnecessary identity documents around with you:

  • REGISTER DIGITAL DRIVERS LICENSE 🪪 You can now store your Victorian driver license in the Vicroads App on your phone 

  • USE PHONE “WALLET” TO STORE CREDIT CARDS 💳 Yes, you heard right ~ provided you have Face ID and phone passcode on your phones, your digital cards are safe

  • USE MEDICARE APP 🩺 to access your Medicare card on the run (or keep it in the car for use as required)

  • REPORT STOLEN GOODS 👮 It’s very important to file a police report at the time of loss as proof (just in case you need proof in the future!)


ONLINE SHOPPING 💰 

  1. USE TRUSTED PAYMENT GATEWAYS (i.e. Paypal / Afterpay / Stripe) to safely pay with credit/debit cards online ~ your details are protected, and you have insurance on purchases. 

  2. USE DIGITAL CREDIT CARD and DYNAMIC CVC for online purchases instead of your physical card details (access virtual card details through your bank App).


BE AWARE OF SCAMS ⚠️

  1. NEVER PROVIDE PERSONAL DETAILS OVER THE PHONE unless you are 100% sure the caller is legitimate. If there’s any uncertainty, hang up and ring your bank or account provider yourself to confirm legitimacy.

  2. VERIFY SENDER EMAIL ADDRESSES ~ legitimate email addresses will be the same URL extension as the official website ~ e.g. wix.com accounts will come from accounts@wix.com NOT pay@wixaccounts.com (this is an example only!)

  3. REPORT AND BLOCK SPAM & PHISHING EMAILS


I work with a lot of clients helping them sift through passwords. Most people use the same "original" password patterns over and over (i.e. dog name and year of birth). They keep them in "Notes" on their device, autosave in internet browsers (Chrome / Safari, etc.) or Apple keychains. If your physical device is accessed, hackers can find ALL your passwords!


If you use the same patterns for your passwords, consider changing your methodology to protect yourself from identity theft. Investing in a secure password manager like 1Password for peace of mind ~ $60/yr is a worthy investment for peace of mind in my opinion! 


 

🔗 For additional information, visit these links:


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Tell us, was this information helpful?

  • Yes, I'm keen to hear more.

  • Kinda, but I need help to action these steps.

  • No, I'm on top of online security.


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