The risk of identity theft has risen thanks to the digital revolution, giving hackers ample opportunities to steal our information if we’re not careful enough. Information needs to be secured in both physical and digital formats. Despite the growing threats, security can still be achieved with the right approach to private information management.

What is identity theft?

Identity theft refers to a crime where a perpetrator uses a pre-exiting, stolen and/or manipulated identity of someone living or dead. Identity crime can also include the use of a fabricated identity and is a critical threat to the Australian community.

Criminals can use your personal information to apply for a credit card, run up debts, apply for benefits, register a vehicle or apply for a passport, all in your name. These sorts of crimes can end up costing you lots of money to rectify. According to the Australian Federal Police, identity crime is a key enabler of serious and organised crime and costs the country around $15 billion annually.

How to secure yourself in the digital world

Taking steps to prevent identity theft are especially important in a digital world with more personal information stored in cloud-based systems. Here are some of the ways you can protect your personal information online:

  • Secure your personal accounts with passwords
  • Check that the virus and security software on your computers and mobile devices is current
  • Don’t use public computers or public WiFi to conduct internet banking
  • Only use trusted and secure online payment websites
  • Regularly review your bank statements
  • Don’t respond to scam emails or letters promising huge rewards
  • Take care when displaying personal information, including date of birth, address, phone contacts, etc, on social media sites

How to secure your physical information

Although you may not have had an issue before, identity theft can occur using your physical records. Here are some of the ways you can protect your personal information:

  • Check your mail regularly
  • Shred or destroy your personal and financial papers before you throw them away
  • Keep physical records in a secure place if you wish to retain them
  • Cover your pin at an ATM or EFTPOS terminal

Whether you need somewhere safe to store your personal information, or you need to destroy your information before it falls into the wrong hands, Grace has the solutions for you. We offer bespoke information management solutions for today’s modern businesses. At Grace, we also understand the importance of personal security, that’s why we provide reliable and secure destruction services. For more information on how we can help you, get in touch with us today.