Summer is here, and with it more leisure time for kids, vacation plans, perhaps even buying a home or getting married.
All of those activities, however, may put your identity and that of others at risk.
June is National Internet Safety Month, designated by Congress and supported by the National Cyber Security Alliance (NCSA).
Over the summer break, tweens, teens and even younger children may spend more time online. Summer has traditionally been travel and wedding season, and the real estate market typically begins to pick up in spring before peaking in the summer, according to Realtor.com.
That makes summer a perfect time to think about online security and safety – for you, for your family and even those gathered to watch you say “I do.”
Every day in June, we’ll provide you with some recommendations on how to better safeguard your personal information – whether you’re shopping for a home, planning your vacation, or just happened to have some extra time on your hands.
Some of the topics we’ll be covering include:
— Identity protection for teens and younger children
— Your wedding website: Security considerations
— How you might unknowingly put your wedding party at risk
— What to do before you leave on that vacation
— Is wi-fi at your hotel or on your plane secure?
— What to know when shopping for a mortgage online
In 2016, identity fraud hit a record high with 15.4 million victims in the United States – a 16 percent increase, according to Javelin Strategy and Research. However, the Javelin report also found that while fraudsters are getting better at evading detection, consumers are also getting smarter and detecting fraud quicker.
“In June, we are often busy with summer travel and enjoying time with family and friends,” said Michael Kaiser, NCSA executive director. “Kids are out of school, which means they have more free time and will likely be spending more time online as well. Internet Safety Month is a good reminder to consider the implications of our online actions, whether planning a vacation, family reunion or wedding or simply being more active on social media, gaming or online shopping.”
The national “Stop.Think.Connect” campaign, developed with leadership from the NCSA and the Anti-Phishing Working Group along with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, encourages all digital citizens to be aware of and practice good online safety habits to stay better protected on all your devices.
The campaign offers resource guides for students, parents and others on internet safety and security. The Department of Homeland Security also offers toolkits on topics including mobile security, online gaming, online privacy and social media, among others.
We hope that over the next month you learn a thing or two that helps you and your family stay safe online.
The information contained in this blog post is designed to generally educate and inform visitors to the Equifax Finance Blog. The blog posts do not give, and should not be assumed to provide, personalized tax, investment, real estate, legal, retirement, credit, personal financial, or other professional advice. Before making any financial decision, you should always consult with the appropriate professionals who can explain your options, rights, and legal responsibilities, and advise you on any tax, legal, credit, or business implications that may result from those decisions. The views and opinions expressed by the authors of blog posts are their own views and may not be the views or opinions of Equifax, Inc. and/or its affiliates.