When the news of Heartbleed broke earlier this year, it really drove home the fact that our data is in constant peril. For over three years, hackers had unfettered access to our personal information and escaped detection completely. Once it was detected the problems were patched immediately and we were all instructed to change our passwords for multiple major sites we visit every day.
We learned many lessons from this massive data breach, most notably that data breaches happen a lot more than we all think they do. Hackers have multiple access points for your data online, and once they have it there are multiple ways they can profit from it. Once they have your personal information, it can cost retailers and banks a lot of money, a cost that will undoubtedly be passed on to consumers. So it’s really important to protect yourself as best you can.
There are many ways to protect yourself. Place fraud alerts on your credit accounts so you can find out immediately if there’s suspicious activity. Check your statements regularly, don’t overshare on social networks, and if you think you’ve been compromised report it immediately. Learn more about data breaches and how you can protect yourself from this infographic.