It’s International Fraud Awareness Week – a dedicated time to raise awareness of fraud. In an increasingly digital world, protecting our personal information is more important than ever, which is why we’re taking a moment to talk more about the steps we can all take to safeguard our digital identities…
A digital identity is a digital representation of our identity information, such as our name and age. They work just as a physical identity would – just in a digital version, with encrypted data and digitally signed attribute to ensure the document is genuine and authentic.
Such digital credentials are crucial to establish trust between individuals and online service providers – helping to verify the identities of people and things, onboard them to new services, grant access, share data and validate transactions.
And while they enable us to enjoy everything that the online (and real!) world has to offer, we also need to remember that fraudsters are continually trying to find new ways to compromise our identity – and unless we’re careful we can leave breadcrumbs across the internet.
For this year’s International Fraud Awareness Week, we’re sharing some small things you can do to keep your credentials and online personas secure….
- Monitor for compromises: On this blog we speak frequently about the importance of setting two-factor (2FA) and multi-factor authentication (MFA), which is where users are required to verify themselves using more than just a password. But it’s important to also remain vigilant for notifications indicating unauthorised access. This week is a good time to shut down inactive email accounts and unsubscribe from company communications which may distract from important notifications.
- Rely on trusted services: As digital interactions become increasingly prevalent and with the rise of data breaches and scams online, we may find ourselves more and more uncomfortable sharing sensitive information such as ID scans. It is more important than ever for us to exercise our due diligence when engaging with companies and online platforms, ensuring that they take all necessary precautions to safeguard our personal information.
- Avoid storing ID document scans on your phone: Storing scans of your official ID documents (such as screen shots or pdf copies of your passport or driver’s license) on your devices can create significant privacy and security risks. If your device is lost, stolen, or hacked, then these DIY scans containing all your personal information are vulnerable
- Remember the cybersecurity basics: Updating your device’s operating system whenever prompted to, staying vigilant to phishing and avoiding public WiFi without a Virtual Private Network (VPN) will all help to keep your personal information safe. Remind yourself of the cybersecurity basics here.
These relatively simply measure will go a long way to enhance online identity protection and keep our personal information safe and secure.