There are many things you can do personally to stay safe online. Here are some tips for protecting your computers, your private information and your identity.
Don't ever share your usernames or passwords with anyone. Don't use the same passwords for different sites. Create complex passwords of at least eight characters that have both upper and lower case letters, numbers and special symbols. If you can't remember your passwords, store them in a safe place away from the computer.
If there is any reason to doubt the authenticity of an email message from a company you do business with, don't click on the links or buttons in the message. If you receive messages that ask you to verify or re-enter account information that you have already given to an organization, be suspicious. Do not provide confidential information, like PIN for an ATM card.
If you suspect an organization is being impersonated, or are aware of a scam, contact:
Delete suspicious emails without replying to them.
Avoid emailing personal and financial information.
Use extra caution with wireless Internet connections. Wireless networks may not provide as much security as wired Internet connections. You can learn more about security issues relating to wireless networks by visiting the Wi-Fi Alliance at wi-fi.org.
Install personal firewalls and security software packages with antivirus, antispam and spyware detection features. Make sure your computer has the latest security patches and make sure that you access your online financial account only on a secure web page using encryption.
Don't use a debit card with access to your bank accounts. Credit card companies give you better protection in case someone gains access to your credit card number.
When you're finished with online transactions or checking online accounts, log off. Closing your browser or typing in a new web address when you're done using your account may not be enough to prevent others from gaining access to your online information.
The Internet is now part of everyday life, with millions of people shopping, banking and socializing online. Users must be vigilant in recognizing online threats that put their privacy, personal information and identity at jeopardy, especially when you consider that identity theft is the fastest growing crime in the U.S., according to FBI statistics. Be on the lookout:
The number of identity fraud incidents is on the rise, with more than 11.1 million adults victimized in 2009; and identity fraud is the fastest growing crime in the U.S. according to FBI statistics. If you're concerned about having your identity stolen, Travelers can help you protect yourself. We offer Identity Fraud Expense Reimbursement Coverage that helps pay the expenses associated with getting back your good name.
If you suspect you've become a victim of identify theft, or that someone has stolen your personal information and committed a crime or fraud in your name (identity fraud), act immediately:
Arm yourself with protection that gives you the resources you need to restore your good name in the event you become a victim.Click here to learn more »
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