What’s Next? Our Prediction on Identity Theft Trends in 2016
Now that we’ve studied up on the big data breaches of 2015, it’s time to take what we have learned and prepare for the trends that will likely change the face of identity theft crimes in 2016. In short, security will be a common denominator of your everyday life.
Default Security Options
Historically, most websites, software and mobile devices had security options turned off by default (e.g., no smartphone passcode at startup.) So, if you wanted security enabled, you had to manually turn it on in your Settings. In a recent move, companies are turning on those security options by default and requiring you to turn them off, if you so choose. In doing so, it shifts the liability for theft from the company to the user.
Chip-enabled credit cards, aka Europay, MasterCard, Visa (EMV) cards, will become commonplace in 2016. Although the embedded chip makes it more difficult for thieves to clone your physical card, the card number can still be exploited by criminals who make their purchases online. In the coming years, you will need to be more proactive in verifying any purchases made online that appear in your bank statements.
In addition to websites forcing you to use longer, stronger passwords, many financial websites will automatically ask you to enable a second passcode sent via text message to your mobile phone when you log in to their website. Known as two-factor authentication, this keeps criminals who’ve hacked your login data elsewhere (i.e. Anthem) from using it to access your financial accounts.
Internet of Things
2016 will be the year that we begin to connect everyday appliances (e.g. TVs, refrigerators, cars, thermostats, etc.) to the Internet. This will improve functionality, such as your car texting your boss if you are stuck in traffic, as well as convenience… can you imagine your refrigerator telling you that you are out of milk?! BUT, connection comes with risk. As you purchase Internet-enabled appliances, make sure you research and configure the built-in security settings to keep intruders out.