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Things to Think About on Data Privacy Day

Related services: Security & Policy

Sunday, January 28, 2018, is Data Privacy Day. To ensure you're in control of your personal information in the coming year, consider the following:

Being cyber aware improves your privacy and security

When you hear about cyber scams, always think: “This could happen to me.” Focusing your attention will make you a harder target. Be fully aware of social engineering tactics--essentially, somebody trying to trick you on a phone call or in an email by pretending to be a trusted source. Only open email and text messages from people you know, and always have your guard up for odd-looking links. Keep your computers and mobile devices current with the latest updates and security software, and use strong passwords. Learn more about being #CyberAware.

Five things you can do now to manage your privacy

Most households run networks of devices linked to the Internet: computers, game consoles, smart TVs, assistants, phones, and wearables. They make it easy to connect to the world, but be aware they can also track and share a lot about you. When shopping for a new Internet-enabled device, determine what data it will gather and where it's being shared.

Determine how the companies behind apps and devices protect and control your data. Does the value of the services gained from sharing data outweigh the value of the data you're being asked to surrender?

Beware of alleged online surveys or cold calls that are actually intended to steal personal information.

Predatory offers for freebies often require your credit card, indicating it's necessary to cover shipping costs or a deposit. That could lead to unnecessary, bogus charges on your bill, or recurring charges that are difficult to stop.

Think twice before downloading free entertainment, screen savers, or mobile apps. Some of these are specifically created to steal personal information, passwords, and files. Learn more about managing your privacy.

Keeping your identity and personal information safe is a year-round proposition! Next week is Tax Identity Theft Awareness Week. Learn more about risks and how to protect yourself.

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