If you, your family members or anyone with whom you do business shares music, photos, or documents online, identity thieves could be downloading your information — including your Social Security number, home address and health information — legally.
In any given second, nearly 22 million people around the globe are on peer-to-peer (P2P) file-sharing networks, where they download and swap movies, software and documents over the Internet. But users of file-sharing networks can expose the contents of entire hard drives to everyone else on the network.
In April 2009, inform from the Today Show found 25,800 student loan applications, over 150,000 tax returns and nearly 626,000 credit reports, just by searching P2P networks.
Antivirus software protects your computer from viruses, but it can’t stop thieves from accessing your computer if you’ve given them permission via P2P file-sharing networks. And while you can stop using P2P networks, you can’t control others — your doctor or the teller at your bank could be file-sharing without your knowledge.
The Federal Trade Commission recently warned nearly 100 organizations, including companies, schools and local governments, that they had leaked their customers’ and employees’ personal information onto online file-sharing networks. The information found included Social Security numbers, health information and drivers’ licenses — more than enough information for any identity thief to steal your identity.
What can help put a stop to these online data breaches? The LifeLock Personal Breach Detection Service actively searches file-sharing networks worldwide for your personal information. When a leak is detected, LifeLock alerts you with specific details and then takes action to help you shut down the breach of information.
LifeLock also alerts you to other potential identity threats, patrols over 10,000 criminal Web sites for illegal selling of your information, helps cancel or replace the contents of your stolen wallet (cash, pictures, and other monies excluded) and so much more — giving you the peace of mind that your good name is protected.