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How To Prevent Identity Theft Online

Identity theft is now one of the most common crimes all over the world. While the Internet is a fantastic tool to find information and make purchases, it can also be used for more fraudulent purposes. Identity theft is a process where a criminal will steal information such as credit card details, banking information, Social Security numbers, and so forth. This information is then used to make purchases online, drain bank accounts of commit any number of other fraudulent transactions. With this in mind here some steps you can take to help prevent identity theft online.
1. Make sure that you never give out any details about your Social Security number when you are online. There is no reason for anyone to ever ask this of you on a website. So make sure you keep the details to yourself.
2. When you are making purchases online ensure that there is a secure server handling the information. Make sure that there is a little lock icon present in the bottom of your screen, or see if there is an "s" at the end of the Http protocol, i.e. http(s). If you are in doubt about security of the website or connection, do not make the purchase. It is better to purchase from another website than risk having your identity stolen.
3. Make sure that your computer has a good anti-virus software installed. With one of these in place, Internet I.D. criminals will find it much more difficult to obtain your financial information. Anti-virus programs are not very expensive but they are an essential component for anyone who uses the Internet. Free antivirus programs you can install are AGV Free, and Avast!, both of which provide excellent anti-virus protection.
4. Never give out your pin number, password or other login information relating to your bank and credit card accounts online, unless you are sure you are on the actual financial institution website. Once again there is no reason for any website other than your band to ask for these details. If in doubt, click off the website and do not return.
Finally, knowing how to prevent identity theft online is one way to make sure that you are protected against criminals who will try to do you financial harm. Unfortunately this is a growing problem but if you know how to guard against identity theft you will be able to protect yourself.
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