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Does a smartphone raise your risk of identity theft?


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Author's Note: Does a smartphone raise your risk of identity theft?

A few minutes ago, my wife walked in and asked me to register for online access to one of our retirement accounts. Her timing was impeccable. At that exact moment, I was reading an article about how important it is to use different passwords with each of your online accounts. The same article suggested that you change those passwords every year but never write them all down in the same place. So there I was, staring at my billionth login screen trying to choose a unique username and password that I would somehow remember five minutes from now without writing down. Impossible!

That's why I was so excited to hear about apps for your smartphone or computer that allow you to create a password-protected document to store all of those precious online passwords. Even Microsoft Word allows you to password-protect a document. Why didn't I think of that before? Now I can throw away the scrawled list of coded password hints that I keep taped to the underside of my desk. Er, on second thought, pretend you didn't hear that.

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Sources

  • Arthur, Charles and Boggin, Steve. "Wi-Fi security flaw for smartphones puts your credit cards at risk." The Guardian. April 25, 2011 (April 4, 2014) http://www.theguardian.com/technology/2011/apr/25/wifi-security-flaw-smartphones-risk
  • Chen, Brian X. "How to Shield Yourself From Smartphone Snoops." The New York Times. April 3, 2013. (April 4, 2014) http://www.nytimes.com/2013/04/04/technology/personaltech/how-to-shield-yourself-from-smartphone-snoops.html
  • Levin, Adam. "The 10 Dumbest Risks People Take With Their Smartphones." Credit.com. Jan. 31, 2013. (April 4, 2013) http://blog.credit.com/2013/01/the-10-dumbest-risks-people-take-on-their-smartphones/
  • Lipka, Mitch. "Rise in identity fraud tied to smartphone use." Reuters. Feb. 22, 2012. (April 4, 2014) http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/02/22/us-idtheft-javelin-idUSTRE81L16520120222
  • Merz, Theo. "Surge in malware on Android smartphone system." The Telegraph. Aug. 6, 2013. (April 4, 2014) http://www.telegraph.co.uk/technology/news/10225511/Surge-in-malware-on-Android-smartphone-system.html
  • Pew Research. "Mobile Technology Fact Sheet." January 2014. (April 4, 2014) http://www.pewinternet.org/fact-sheets/mobile-technology-fact-sheet/

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