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Identity Theft on the Internet 
Knowing the Online Threats

How is identity theft on the internet even possible? Identity theft used to occur by digging through dumpsters or stealing mail.

Thieves have become smarter and more sophisticated and they have moved to the internet.

The internet gives a thief the ability to steal identities from people all over the world and not just around the thief’s geographical location.

Also, many people are using the internet for things like purchases and banking, which means that personal information is being transmitted over the internet.

Thieves consider it a personal challenge to try to steal as much information as they can from people on the internet and use it to their advantage.

identity theft terms

How Spy-ware Works

The easiest way for a thief to steal your identity is through spy-ware. Spy-ware computer programs watch where you go online and what information you send out, such as a credit card number when you make an online purchase or your bank account information if you use online banking.

Information gathered by the spy-ware program is sent back to the thief who can then use that personal information to his or her advantage.

Online bill pay, online purchases, and online banking are big conveniences for people, but they are also ways that spy-ware programs can access your information.

In order to protect yourself from identity theft on the internet, you need a good anti-spy-ware program. A good anti-spy-ware program will use two scanners for double protection against incoming spy-ware attempts as well as scan the computer for any spy-ware that is already in place.

Be Cautious Online

In order to keep your anti-spy-ware program from working overtime, it is best not to download programs from websites that you are not familiar with, because you never know what kind of viruses or spy-ware could be attached to those programs.

Also, you should always check website URLs to make sure that you have gone to the right website. Many scams mimic the design of the original website and use similar domain names in the hopes that you will not notice that you are on the wrong site and will give them your personal information while making a "purchase".

Online Protection

With a little extra care, you can protect yourself from identity theft online by making it as difficult as possible for a thief to steal your personal information.

Having your identity stolen is not only frustrating and expensive, but it can take a long time to clear your name and credit report after you have been a victim of identity theft on the internet.

Protect yourself with anti-spy-ware programs and consider purchasing identity theft insurance for an extra layer of protection.

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