Keep Private Information Private

Every week, our goal is to use this space to help our community deter, detect, and defend again ID Theft.  Here a 3 more tips to keep private information private!

(1) Give Personal Information Over Encrypted Websites Only

If you’re shopping or banking online, stick to sites that use encryption to protect your information as it travels from your computer to their server.  To determine if a website is encrypted, look for https at the beginning of the web address (the “s” is for secure). 

Some websites use encryption only on the sign-in page, but if any part of your session isn’t encrypted, the entire account could be vulnerable. Look for https on every page of the site you’re on, not just where you sign in.

(2) Protect Your Passwords

Here are a few principles for creating strong passwords and keeping them safe:

  • The longer the password, the tougher it is to crack.  Use at least 10 characters; 12 is ideal for most home users.
  • Mix letters, numbers, and special characters.  Try to be unpredictable – don’t use your name, birthdate, or common words. 
  • Don’t use the same password for many accounts.  If it’s stolen from you – or from one of the companies with which you do business – it can be used to take over all your accounts.
  • Don’t share passwords on the phone, in texts or by email.  Legitimate companies will not send you messages asking for your password.  If you get such a message, it’s probably a scam.
  • Keep your passwords in a secure place, out of plain sight.

(3) Back up Your Files

No system is completely secure.  Copy important files onto a removable disc or an external hard drive, and store it in a safe place.  If your computer is compromised, you’ll still have access to your files.

If you have questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us (845) 705-7279.  For more on id theft protection, visit

by HV Shred