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Technology is constantly evolving. And with this evolution comes benefits and challenges. One area in which technology has both a negative and positive impact is identity theft. In this article, we discuss identity theft and technology. 

How Technology Contributes to Identity Theft

Technology has many advantages, but there are several ways in which it contributes to identity theft, including: 

  • Cloud computing and storage: The purpose of the cloud is to store and organize information in an off-site location. Both individuals and corporations utilize cloud technology. The benefits of cloud technology include cost-effectiveness, flexibility, and convenience. Unfortunately, however, this technology also contributes to identity theft. For example, the ability to access the cloud from cell phones encourages users to engage with unsecured Wi-Fi connections, providing hackers with a means to commit identity theft. 
  • Skimming: Skimming is a technique used by criminals to collect and copy data from credit cards. By altering commercial card readers and ATMs, identity thieves can record the data and personal identification numbers of every card used.
  • Spear phishing: Spear phishing is a technique that tricks people into downloading malware or revealing sensitive information. As opposed to traditional phishing scams, which send malicious communications to large numbers of people, spear phishing is more targeted and committed with a specific purpose in mind.
  • Unsecured Wi-Fi networks: Finally, as touched upon above, unsecured Wi-Fi is another way that technology contributes to identity theft. Public Wi-Fi is unsecured because the data that is transferred isn’t encrypted, which allows hackers easy access to all connected devices. Therefore, it is advisable to avoid logging into financial accounts and other sensitive websites while using public Wi-Fi networks.  

Technology and Preventing Identity Theft 

Although technology can contribute to identity theft, it also has the ability to help prevent it. Examples of technological methods that can help prevent identity theft include: 

  • Encryption: Encryption is a technology that protects personal data. By converting protected data into an encoded format, this method ensures that identity thieves can’t access personal information, such as account information, Social Security numbers, and more. 
  • Chip technology: Chip technology is another method used by financial institutions to enhance information security and prevent identity theft. These chips require customers to either enter or sign a PIN to verify account ownership. If the customer’s PIN or signature does not match, then the chip alerts the financial institution of potential misuse or theft. In addition, this technology’s encryption capabilities make it difficult for criminals to duplicate or clone people’s cards, further helping to prevent identity theft.

Hire a Consumer Class Action Lawyer 

If you are a victim of identity theft, you need an experienced attorney on your side. When you come to consumer class action lawyer Seth Lehrman for help, Mr. Lehrman will do what is necessary to resolve your situation. We are highly experienced in helping identify theft victims seek compensation, and we are ready and willing to work diligently on your behalf. Please contact us as soon as possible to arrange a confidential consultation.