Social Media Networks Facilitate Identity Theft and Fraud

Bank of Southern California is focused on ensuring the safety and security of client information. In this edition, we discuss an age-old crime enabled by the popularity of social media: identity theft.

Social networking has changed the way we interact with friends and colleagues with nearly 209 million users in the U.S. alone. Profile pages publicly display personal information, enabling thieves to easily steal users’ identities. It is important to be discrete when using social networking sites. Information pertaining to your place of birth, mother’s maiden name, or a pet’s name should not be public, as it can help criminals guess or reset passwords for online accounts.

To help protect yourself, follow these precautions:

  • Use strong passwords that do not contain your birthdate or family names.
  • Use caution when posting. Do not publicly announce vacations or tag family members with full names listed.
  • Never reveal your location.
  • Use discretion when adding new friends or connections.

Pay careful attention to your online activity and remember these important tips when posting information publicly.

Identity Theft in the Digital Age

A thief stole the identity of an active social media user and made off with thousands. The cause of the theft: public information.

In this case, a thief made a fake social media account and requested to be friends with the victim. The criminal collected pertinent data about the user including date of birth, location, and maiden name and was able to gain access to her accounts. The thief stole thousands and it was not until the victim received her statements that she was made aware.

Social media attracts criminals who can pose security threats. It is important to keep information private and be selective when adding friends/ followers.

Commitment You Can Bank On

Bank of Southern California is committed to providing resources to help keep our clients’ assets safe and secure. To learn more about how to grow and protect your business, call 858.847.4780 or visit us in person at one of our many offices conveniently located throughout Southern California.