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Protect Your Online Information and Identity

 

How do you secure your online identity?

  • Secure your devices (Mac, PC, Phones)
    • Ensure that your devices have the latest updates
    • Install trusted apps and software and keep them up-to-date
    • Limit the number of apps and software installed (uninstall/delete any you don’t use)
    • Lock your device when unattended or not in use
    • Enable device encryption
    • Enable backups
    • Enable device tracking
  • Enable two-factor authentication (when available)
  • Log out of your accounts and/or lock your computer before stepping away
  • Delete or close old accounts you no longer use
  • Be sure to set up and secure your account recovery options.
  • Avoid responding to phishing emails
  • Check if your account has been compromised in a data breach and get notifications if your account appears in any other data breaches.

 

How do you protect yourself from identity theft?

  • Keep your Social Security number secure and ask questions before deciding to share it. Ask if you can use a different kind of identification. If someone asks you to share your SSN, ask:
    • Why they need it
    • How it will be used
    • How they will protect it
    • What happens if you don’t share the number
  • Monitor your Social Security Information
  • Don’t overshare on social networking sites
  • Keep passwords private
  • Shred documents (such as receipts, credit offers, checks, bank statements, etc.) when you no longer need them.
  • Opt out of pre-approved credit offers in the mail.
  • Monitor your credit reports for free. Federal law requires each of the three major credit reporting agencies to give you a free credit report — at your request — each year. Visit AnnualCreditReport.com — the only authorized website for free credit reports. If you want to monitor your reports over time, you can spread out your requests, getting one free report every four months.
  • Place a credit (security) freeze at each of the nationwide credit reporting companies. This makes it more difficult for identity thieves to open new accounts in your name.
  • If possible, request a pass phrase to access or make changes to your account information over the phone at your bank, phone provider, etc.
  • if possible, apply for an Identity Protection PIN from the IRS

 

What do you do if your identity has been stolen?

 

What do you do if your EGSC account(s) have been compromised?

  • Call EGSC IT at 478-289-2004 as soon as possible
  • Change your password and security questions from a secure device
  • Information that we will need to know:
    • How your account was compromised (suspicious website, email attachment, etc.)
    • When and where it occurred

 

What is Phishing?

Phishing is the act of attempting to scam a user into revealing their personal information such as passwords and/or credit card information through email by impersonating a legitimate source. Other variations include scams using text messages and phone calls.

Look out for:

  • Typos and/or poor grammar
  • Links to a website that appear identical to the real one (such as to a legitimate bank website). Hover over the link to see if it matches what’s typed in the message.
  • Emails that include threats or a sense of urgency to respond by clicking a link or opening an attachment
  • Unexpected emails from someone you know

What should you do if you are unsure it’s legitimate?

  • If you know and trust the sender, contact them directly (by phone or in person) to verify that they sent the message.
  • Avoid clicking on links within the email. If this is from a familiar source (such as a bank acct. or school), open your browser and go directly to their website and log in from there.
  • Contact EGSC IT at cswork@ega.edu or call 478-289-2004

 

External Resources