Unfortunately, today many of the threats people face are things they can’t see. This is certainly the case in regards to hackers. Being hacked could mean having your identity stolen and having to deal with strangers using your credit card accounts. However, there are ways to fend off this threat. Below are a few things you can do to protect your data.

1. Avoid Wi-Fi Hot Spots

Wi-Fi hot spots are indeed quite convenient. They allow you to connect to the internet for free at your leisure while you are away from your home or business. They are available in locations like restaurants, malls, stores, airports and more. However, they are also a significant risk. Wi-Fi hot spots are one of the main places that hackers try to take advantage of to obtain unsuspecting people’s data. Hackers can have the ability to intercept all the information you think you are sending to a secure network. It might be best to avoid them all together.

2. Use an Identity and Privacy Monitoring Service

Avoiding all threats that can possibly lead to hackers stealing your information and identity can be quite arduous. It may be best in many circumstances to sign up for a service in which a third party actively monitors your privacy and use of identifying information to act as a gateway to keep out all threats. You can find many privacy and identity monitoring services available from different companies like Bask. All that is usually required is the payment of a monthly fee.

3. Use PayPal to Make Purchases

Today, a very large portion of online retailers accept PayPal as payment as opposed to only taking credit and debit card numbers. Doing so may be a very good idea. With this method, the only organization that has access to your credit card information is PayPal. PayPal pays the online retailer for you by drawing the funds from your card or bank account. This lessens some of the risk of your credit card information getting into the hands of fraudsters.

4. Don’t Store Financial Information Where You Use Your Internet

Another good idea is to only store your private and financial information on a removable thumb drive or in a separate hard drive partition. You would then connect to the internet on a separate partition or piece of hardware. Make sure the drive is not connected while you are online. This way, if you download malware off of the net, it won’t have the ability to find that information and send it back to a third party.

Overall, safely using the internet these days requires some precautions. Not being cautious can result in your identity being stolen. That’s a nightmare no one should be forced to live through.