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“Having two identities for yourself is an example of a lack of integrity,” Mark Zuckerberg proclaimed in The Facebook Effect. Easy for him to say. Facebook has made a mint on data integrity—your personal information yoked to likes and dislikes sold to the highest bidder. But here’s some bad news for Zuck: When it comes to navigating a world filled with identity thieves, it pays to lack data integrity.

There are more than a billion records containing some form of personally identifiable information already “out there” in the wake of the mega data breaches suffered by JPMorgan Chase, Target, Home Depot and others. You should assume that your information may already be in harm’s way. There are things you can do to prepare for the inevitability of identity theft–often for a fee–and it’s a good…

While companies may think their corporate computer systems are secured, threats could be closer to home – literally. The trend of employees logging into work from the comfort of their house is rapidly picking up at companies across the U.S. Almost 1 in 4 workers in the U.S. said they telecommute at least part of the week in 2014, according to an infographic by Intuit. With more devices connected to the Internet, companies should be aware of the threats that lurk as employees work remotely and should safeguard their systems accordingly. 

Here are three reasons to improve security for telecommuting workers:

1. Internet of Things Devices Could Result in 'Cross Contamination'
A report by IT security firm Tripwire found less than half of IT professionals believed that Internet of Things devices were properly secured, Infosecurity Magazine reported. IoT technology found at offsite…

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It’s good to have a plan for worst-case scenarios. Here, the good folks at MintLife Blog have shared some key steps to protecting personal information and credit, especially if it has been exposed in a data breach.

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The president has discussed the issues of data privacy and cyber security several times recently, both during press conferences and the State of the Union address. He has put forth a handful of proposals to encourage more robust and more effective information sharing between the federal, state and local governments and organizations in private industry. While the goal of improved information sharing is a good one, there may be some flaws in these proposals.
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shutterstock_164540318According to the Telephone Consumer Protection Act, it’s illegal to robocall a mobile phone number without permission. The American Bankers Association wants to change that, arguing that robocalls will help fight identity theft and other kinds of fraud. Opponents say that’s an overreach, one that will erode an important consumer protection.

“Gee, I can’t talk right now. Why don’t you give me your home number and I’ll call you later.”

That’s how Jerry Seinfeld memorably got rid of telemarketers, but for most of us getting a robocall is no laughing matter. It can cost you money, and beyond that it’s just annoying. In fact, since 2003, more than 223 million Americans have registered with the Federal Trade Commission’s National Do Not Call Registry. It helps, but you may have noticed the…

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Small and medium-size businesses outsource a number of IT functions to improve operations and reduce costs. As they face growing data security threats—employee error or theft, cyber attacks, and more—it’s critical for SMBs to develop robust information security programs.

While it may not make financial sense for SMBs to bring a chief information security officer on board, the organizational need for this resource is clear. A surprising 77 percent of SMBs believe they’re safe from attacks, according to the Ponemon Institute. Yet SMBs are typically more vulnerable to breach risks than larger organizations because they often have valuable data, lack the technical or financial resources to adequately protect sensitive data, and are unaware of threats and security best practices.
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Small and medium-size businesses face mounting risks to their data security. Data breaches at large corporations such as Sony Pictures and Morgan Stanley make headlines. But many smaller organizations are typically more vulnerable to threats because they lack the technical and financial resources necessary to properly protect sensitive data.

There are a number of reasons why. Many SMBs are unaware of cybersecurity best practices, according to the National Small Business Association. In a survey, the trade group said that nearly half—44 percent—of respondents experienced at least one cyber attack. SMBs also often have little understanding of the type and volume of data residing in their systems. And they may lack strong leadership expertise in data privacy risk management.
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With good credit, buying a big-ticket purchase like a car should be a smooth process. However, if car buyers are victim to identity theft scams, they may struggle with getting the vehicle they originally had their eyes on.

While car thieves could steal a vehicle worth thousands of dollars, identity thieves could do more serious financial damage. 

In May 2014, the FBI announced the agency charged members of an international identity theft ring that stole dozens of vehicles using their victims' information, according to a release.

"These charges are the first strike back on behalf of identity theft victims who now have to reclaim their good names – a frustrating task that can take years," U.S. Attorney Laura Duffy said in a statement.

As victims attempt to rebuild their lives and move on from identity theft, they should be aware of the consequences of this crime when it comes to buying…

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It’s easy to put off tax preparation when it’s still early in the new year and many of us are focused on meeting resolutions.

But it’s important for taxpayers to file their tax returns early to avoid tax-related identity theft. This fast-growing crime happens when someone uses your personal information—like a Social Security number—to file a fraudulent return and collect your refund. It can be difficult and time-consuming to resolve.

But you can take steps to protect yourself and learn more during Tax Identity Theft Awareness Week. Check out our latest infographic for easy protection tips:

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While tax season has only just officially begun, consumers are already on edge after a string of data breaches and identity theft scams in 2014. In addition to protecting their information from thieves, taxpayers are likely to see the speed of their tax refunds slow and customer service quality decline this year, The Washington Post reported.

Customer service quality at the IRS could worsen as the IRS attempts to help more identity theft victims and deal with new tax-related challenges stemming from the implementation of the Affordable Care Act. With a more challenging tax season this year, consumers can follow these three tips to stay on track with their taxes and prevent identity theft at the same time:

1. File Your Tax Return Early
Since customers could see their tax refunds later than they expected as the IRS ramps up its identity theft detection measures, the…