Credit Card Cloning

The Sacramento Bee published an interesting article this week about credit card cloning.  Credit card cloning is a relatively new form of credit card fraud where a person can steal your credit card’s information when you swipe your card through a “skimmer”.  Your card data is then stored and can be re-created on anything with a magnetic strip like a gift card or hotel key. 

The Javelin Strategy and Research report, states that credit card fraud has increased 87 percent since 2010, culminating in aggregate losses of $6 billion nationwide.

Read the article’s tips on how to prevent yourself from being a victim of credit card cloning. 

Here at PrivacyGuard, we agree with taking preventative steps to protect your credit and identity!

Posted by Katie

Arrests for the FBI

The FBI has stated that they have arrested 24 suspects for Credit Card Fraud, after a two year investigation.

Needless to say, we here at PrivacyGuard approve.

We believe that identity theft is one of the hardest crimes to stop, because there are so many ways a person can be victimized, and also because of the global nature of the crime. Many of the countries where these thieves operate are non-extradition countries, so even if the authorities are able to identify a criminal, they are not always able to prosecute.

We'd like to applaud the FBI for their recent arrests and hope that justice will be served.

2012 Data Breach Re-Cap

An article written this week discusses the worst data breaches in 2012 thus far.  The top three include:

-          New York State Electric & Gas Co.

-          Global Payments, Inc.

-          California Dept. of Child Support Services

As we said in our post on the LinkedIn data breach, make sure all of your personal accounts have different passwords in order to prevent identity thieves from gaining access to all of your private information.  That is one simple way to help yourself in case you fall victim to a data breach. 

Posted by Katie

Summer Travels

One of my favorite tips for preventing ID Theft has to do with what you posted on social media, and how not everyone who is your "friend" online is actually a friend in real life.

As we're entering the summer, and folks are preparing to travel, please remember this tip. Over the past few weeks, I've seen dozens of folks saying things like:

  • I'm going to Boston for the next 10 days (said by a New Yorker)
  • So excited, I just booked my flight to California and am leaving on July XX (said by someone in Philadelphia). 
  • Look out London, here I come!

If you don't know everyone you're sharing this information with (and we are guessing there's a good chance you don't), you might just be telling a thief that your house will be empty, and unprotected, for whatever number of days.

Rather than posting a preview of your trip, you can always post a recap when you get back.

Safe travels this summer.

Posted by Mike

Alert: Possible LinkedIn Breach

Today it was reported that there was a possible LinkedIn breach, and 6.5 million LinkedIn user’s passwords were leaked to a Russian hacker forum. 

Tip 1- If you are a LinkedIn user, you should change your current password. 

Tip 2- You should change any other account password that shares the same password as your LinkedIn account (as we pointed out on Twitter, our research indicates that this is a majority of folks).  For example, if you use the same password for LinkedIn and your online banking account, it may now be possible for these hackers to know both.  Protect yourself and change your password!