Personal Information and Privacy

How to protect your privacy and identity online as per Stay Smart Online.

Take proactive measures to protect your information

  • Use strong passwords and don't share them with anyone. Ideally use a passphrase that is made up of at least four words, including at least 13 characters, for example 'horsecupstarshoe'. Make it meaningful to you but hard for others to guess. Learn more about using strong passwords.
  • Use a separate email address for shopping, discussion groups and newsletters. If you need to, you can then change this address without disrupting online business activities.
  • Only share your primary email address with people you know.
  • Adjust your privacy settings on social networks to control the amount and type of information you want to share.

Moderate your activity online and monitor for signs of compromise

  • Check your billing and account records carefully to detect signs of potential identity theft early.
  • Be careful when signing up to mailing lists – spammers sometimes use the unsubscribe button to validate addresses.
  • Only make online purchases from companies that have a clear privacy policy and secure payment pages. Find more information about safe online banking and payments.
  • Think before you fill out online forms and be careful with whom and how you share your information. Ask yourself: do I really need to give my information to this site?
  • Keep a record of what information you have given to whom.

Know what to do if your identity is stolen

  • Notify your financial institutions.
  • Change your passwords.
  • Notify the relevant websites.
  • Request a credit report from a reputable credit reference bureau. 

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