We live in the era of OpenID and Mark Zuckerberg’s statement that, “the age of privacy is over.” But your financial information, social security numbers and even social networking logins and passwords are important bits of data to protect. As we move toward a one-login-fits-all system and open more of our lives on the social web, we still need to be aware of privacy, security and safety concerns for ourselves, our computers and our information.
IdentityTheft911.com is a leading resolutions service for identity theft and management services. I caught up with its Information Security Officer Ondrej Krehel recently for a video chat about identity theft, online security, phishing scams and cyber threats.
Some of the finer points of Krehel’s points include:
- Separate your social networking logins, passwords and perhaps even emails from your financial information credentials.
- U.S. courts have found a person guilty of computer fraud for posing as someone else on a social networking site. If you fake and identity and your activity leads to a crime, you are liable for that activity.
- Ensure your computer is updated with security patches, anti-virus software, spyware detection updates and more.
- Be aware of what you’re doing online. Don’t click on links or images from people you don’t know, not just in your email, but also in messages on your social networks like Facebook and Twitter.
- It’s not just about infecting your accounts and computers, but if you are infected, you also potentially infect your friends and social network connections as well.
- Apple users are not immune to vulnerabilities related to online scams, malware and identity theft scams.
- Companies need to strongly review and consider policies for allowing open social networking because of fraud and piracy issues. Make your users aware of malware and privacy issues if you are going to allow employee use.
- If an offer appears to good to be true, it might be. Any advertising or promotional offer that asks you for email addresses, credit card information and the like should be considered very carefully.
For more details on the case of Lori Drew, who was convicted of computer fraud for posing as a teenage boy online to trick a teenage girl, see the New York Times coverage of the verdict.
And no, I’m not necessarily much taller than Krehel. The side-by-side camera thingy with our differing camera angles just makes it look that way. Heh.