Given all the hacks in recent years, people are understandably worried about identity theft. Yet many miss the first step in protecting identity: secure your accounts and data in the strongest way possible.
This means ensuring your accounts are locked down so hackers can’t learn more about you from your emails, social accounts, and of course your financial accounts. The more hackers know about you, the easier identity theft becomes. Only once you have locked down your accounts, does it makes sense to lock your credit at credit bureaus and turn on credit monitoring.
Why? Data is the key that unlocks human judgment. This is why SIM swap hacks happen- since it takes just one person at a carrier to be socially engineered using stolen data to give a hacker a SIM to access all your text messages. Similarly, an identity thief can use stolen information to convince a credit card customer service representative to open another card in your name. The credit agencies recognize this threat.
We realize some hacks are out of your control, but you still must do whatever it takes to lock down your data to have a fighting chance. We can’t fully leave our online security to others, especially when humans are in the loop and mistakes or social engineering can happen.
This is why we recommend protecting your identity starting with stronger authentication. We have written about the risks relying on passwords and password managers. We recommend at the very least implementing 2-factor authentication (2FA), and we wrote a blog post on how to turn it on across the web.
But we also noted in both posts that 2FA has critical vulnerabilities. VoiceProtect offers a 3-factor authentication (3FA) solution (with voice biometrics as a third factor) to address these vulnerabilities if you want the strongest authentication available to consumers. Voice biometrics is similar to fingerprint or face biometrics that you likely use to unlock your phone. It’s a technology used by large banks and Wall Street firms to minimize fraud in their call centers since it removes human judgment or mistakes since voice biometrics is based solely on math.
Bottom line is to protect your identity, start with strong authentication so identity thieves have less of your data to work with. There are some things in life that are simply not worth cutting corners on, and this is one of them. Stay safe!