Lately, we’ve been hearing a lot about ransomware attacks and the companies that have fallen victim to them. Cybercrime like this, phishing, malware attacks, and more can devastate a business. However, one of the scariest potential consequences of a cyberattack is identity theft. In this blog, we’re going to explain what cyber identity theft is and how you can protect your company from it.
We all have sensitive data that consists of personal and financial information, like Social Security Numbers. This data can be used for a variety of purposes, for example, opening a bank account. It would be a significant problem if anyone else were to gain access to these details.
Cyber identity theft is a type of cybercrime where your personal and financial data is obtained without your permission. As you can imagine, a hacker who has this information on hand can essentially assume your identity online. This grants them the power to do everything from opening credit cards in your name to filing fraudulent tax returns.
According to a study from IBM, the average cost of a data breach for corporations in the U.S.—which can lead to identity theft—is around $3.86 million. The report also states it takes an average of 280 days before a company usually identifies and contains a breach. Regardless of the size of your business, these are some staggering numbers that can really impact your bottom line.
While there’s no way to completely protect your business from identity theft, there are steps you can follow to greatly lower your chances of it happening. Here are six digital identity security tips you can use to prevent cybercriminals from taking your sensitive information.
There are times when you’re going to need to pass on confidential personal or corporate information to others. When this time comes, never do it over the phone or on a website. These are easily accessible vectors a hacker can use to obtain the data you’re divulging. In addition, don’t blindly trust whoever is requesting the information. Always verify the legitimacy of the organization and the person asking for the information. If you’re in doubt, it can help to talk to a colleague and your manager about the request.
You’ve likely had to fill out online forms before; and some of them may have even asked for sensitive information. A good rule of thumb when filling out online forms is to take a look at the URL and make sure it uses https:// and has a padlock icon in the field. This is an indication that the website is secure.
You and your employees likely use many passwords throughout the day. It can be tempting to reuse or create simple passwords for the sake of simplicity. But it’s important to keep in mind that is exactly what hackers are hoping for. The simple and reused passwords are easy for digital criminals to crack. Everyone in your organization should be creating strong passwords and changing them on a regular basis.
There are a variety of ways a hacker can get their virtual hands on your personal information. A common method is through your social media accounts. You would be surprised by how much personal information can be obtained from websites and applications like LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, and more.
The stronger the password you create, the hard it’s going to be to remember. If you’re worried you’re going to forget the passwords you created, don’t write them down. Instead, use a password management tool. This way you only have to remember a single password to gain access to your other passwords.
Any documents that contain personal, company, and/or confidential information should be handled carefully. When these documents are no longer needed, they should be disposed of in a secure way.
If you want to protect your company from identity theft, then you need a robust and reliable cybersecurity solution. Computer Technology Management Services specializes in cybersecurity. From dark web monitoring to penetration testing, we offer everything you need to keep your network secure.
Contact us today to learn more about identity theft protection and how we can help.
CTMS is a technology management provider based in Akron, Ohio. For years, our team has offered a variety of technical solutions for our partners in a wide range of industries. Our primary services are IT security, data backup, disaster recovery, and cloud computing, among a host of other IT consulting solutions.