SmartMoney Monday: Protecting your identity

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - With recent data breaches, it's become top of mind for many consumers: protecting your identity.  Identity theft is a crime where a thief steals your personal information, such as your full name or social security number, to commit fraud. What are some ways to prevent this from happening?

One thing that's very helpful is to secure your social security number. Don't carry your social security card in your wallet or write your number on your checks.  Another tip - don't respond to unsolicited requests for personal info like your name, birthday, social security or bank account numbers.

Monitoring and getting copies of your credit reports are also good tips to help keep your identity safe.  Be sure that no one has already tried to get unauthorized credit accounts with your personal information.

Also, when browsing the internet, creating complex passwords helps, as well as installing firewalls and virus detection software on your home computer. And be sure to enable the security features on your mobile devices, especially if you're banking online.

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