Scam of the day – February 12, 2013 – Pornography on smart phones lead to identity theft

Identity thieves know that luring people to download free music, games and, quite often pornography is a good way to get their victims to download malware such as keystroke logging programs that can read all of the information from your computer and use that information to make you a victim of identity theft.  In one famous case, a Florida police officer who was searching for pornography while on his work computer, which, by the way, is a common activity for people at work, unwittingly downloaded a keystroke logging malware program that enabled the identity thieves to get access to data banks used by police departments, which in turn, led to the identity theft of hundreds of thousands of people.  Blue Coat’s 2013 Mobile Malware Report shows that 20% of the time that smart phone users went to malicious websites, they were in search for pornography.   Fortunately, people are getting a bit more savvy when it comes to computer security and are installing security software to help in the battle against malware.  Unfortunately, as I noted in my book, “50 Ways to Protect Your Identity in a Digital Age,” although people are spending more and more time on their smart phones and other portable devices, many people don’t even protect these devices with passwords and few people protect their smart phones and other portable devices with proper security software and keep it up to date.

TIPS

It is a simple mindset to make sure that you consider security whenever you are on any electronic device, whether it be a computer, laptop, smart phone, tablet or any other device.  People should also be wary of public Wi-Fi systems which can be used to steal information from your smart phone or other portable device if you do not have proper security software and encryption progams.  In “50 Ways to Protect Your Identity in a Digital Age,” I go into great detail about steps you should take to make your use of your smart phone more secure.  One thing you should definitely do is install security software and keep it up to date.  Lookout, McAfee, Norton and AVG are just some of the companies that offer excellent security software with some of these programs free.