Did you know that more than nine million Americans have their identity stolen each year?

Your data is stored across countless databases for various purposes, making it a prime target for criminals. With access to your personal information, bad actors can drain your bank account and damage your credit—or worse.

But that doesn’t mean you and your family have to become victims. By taking the right steps, you and your loved ones can enjoy the peace of mind that comes from identity protection.

Check out the nine tips below to discover how you can enable family protection and help prevent identity theft and credit and bank fraud.

1. Be protective of your personal information

If criminals get ahold of your personal information—such as your name, address, date of birth, and social security number—they can use it to commit identity theft. This can impact your credit score, your savings, and your reputation—or even result in criminal records. Protect yourself by shredding documents with any personal information, and, when possible, avoid sharing this information over the phone or via email.

2. Use strong and unique passwords

Passwords are your first line of defense to protecting your online accounts from hackers. That’s why your passwords should be strong: at least eight characters long with a combination of uppercase and lowercase letters, numbers, and symbols.

But it’s just as important you don’t use the same password for multiple accounts. If you’ve been compromised in a data breach, hackers can use your stolen email and password to try and enter thousands of other sites—and if you keep using the same credentials, they’ll be successful.

Instead, use a password manager to easily generate and use strong passwords without having to recall them all. They’ll be stored in a secure vault, so you only need to remember the main password to the password manager app.

3. Monitor your accounts regularly

Detect unauthorized transactions early by regularly checking your bank and credit card statements. If you notice any unauthorized transactions, immediately report them to your bank or credit card company.

4. Be wary of phishing scams

Many criminals will send emails or text messages that appear to be from a legitimate source, like your bank or credit card company. Known as phishing scams, these messages will typically ask you to provide personal information or click on a malicious link. To avoid falling victim, always double-check the source of any message and never click on links or provide personal information unless you’re certain the message is legitimate.

5. Use two-factor authentication

Two-factor authentication adds an extra layer of security to your online accounts. With two-factor authentication, you’ll need to provide a second form of identification—such as a code sent to your phone—in addition to your password. Even if your account information is compromised, bad actors won’t be able to access your account without this secondary identification.

6. Secure your devices and connections

Without the right precautions, your computers, smartphone, and other devices can be easily hacked or compromised. To secure them, make sure your devices are up to date with antivirus software and are password-protected. Avoid using public Wi-Fi to access sensitive information—as these networks are often unsecured—or use a VPN to hide your identity and stay anonymous.

7. Keep an eye on your credit reports

Did you know you’re entitled to a free credit report once a year from each of the three major credit bureaus? Check your credit report regularly to help detect any suspicious activity, such as accounts you didn’t open or loans that you didn’t apply for. You can also use a reputable credit monitoring service—which often includes SSN monitoring—for real-time alerts and protection.

8. Stay on top of the latest scams (especially with the rise of AI)

Criminals are adopting new AI-powered scam tactics as the technology becomes more accessible. For example, it’s now possible to impersonate a friend or family member, even over the phone or by a video call. Keep informed of the latest scam techniques by following reputable cybersecurity experts and checking reputable news outlets. Because new tactics can pop up faster than they can be reported, be extra vigilant—be wary of unsolicited emails and messages and always verify a person’s identity before you share personal information.

9. Get your family covered with an identity protection package

For the best identity protection, you should invest in a comprehensive protection plan. Webroot™ Premium with Allstate™ Identity Protection, for example, includes:

  • Protection against viruses, malware, scams, and other cyber threats.
  • Password management to keep your credentials safe.
  • Protection for 10 family members, including you and your partner, your children, and seniors aged 65+ you wish to protect.
  • Identity, credit, and financial accounts monitoring and alerts if potential fraud is detected.
  • Advanced dark web monitoring that notifies you if your personal data is found in a data breach or your credentials are compromised.
  • 24/7 US-based support with remediation experts that help you restore your stolen identity or mitigate fraud on your accounts.
  • Up to $1M reimbursement1 for:
    • Fraud expenses like out-of-pocket costs associated with identity restoration, including legal fees, lost wages, child or elderly care, replacement of identification cards, driver licenses, and passports.
    • Stolen funds in case identity fraud led to fraud on your saving accounts—including up to $150,000 for 401 (k)/HSA.

Get family protection today

To protect yourself and your family against identity theft and bank fraud, you need to be vigilant and commit to good security practices. By following the nine tips, you can help reduce your likelihood of becoming a victim and safeguard your personal and financial information.

Do you want to make identity protection even easier?

Discover Webroot.

Need help deciding which Webroot product is right for you?
Take our short quiz to discover the ideal plan for safeguarding your devices, privacy, and identity—whether it’s for you or your entire family.


1Identity theft insurance covering expense and stolen funds reimbursement is underwritten by American Bankers Insurance Company of Florida, an Assurant company. The description herein is a summary and intended for informational purposes only and does not include all terms, conditions, and exclusions of the policies described. Please refer to the actual policies for terms, conditions, and exclusions of coverage. Coverage may not be available in all jurisdictions. Product may be updated or modified. Certain features require additional activation. The aggregate limit for an individual or family plan is $1,000,000 in one year.

Guillaume Pascual

About the Author

Guillaume Pascual

Sr. Product Marketing Manager
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