Good Passwords Can Protect Chicago Computer Users From Identity Theft

Most folks would never leave the house without locking their front door. But many of us are essentially doing the same thing with our computer, say Chicago bankruptcy attorneys.

A recent study found that the most common password is still - surprise - 123456. Other passwords are often too short and use common terms like "qwerty." Even worse, the most common security questions (What is your mother's maiden name? Where did you graduate high school? ) are easily available on social networking sites like Facebook.

Considering hackers today can break into hundreds of accounts in just a few minutes, most of us aren't doing enough to protect our banking and credit card information online. Changing your password is a hassle, but it's an even bigger hassle to try to recover thousands of dollars - and rebuild your life - after identity theft. Here are some tips to make protecting your finances easier.

Make up your security questions. Do you have a favorite movie? How about using the character's last name as mom's maiden name? Or the name of your first pet?

When it comes to passwords, it's recommended that you throw in a bunch of non-alphabet characters - you know, $&*#38. Problem is, that can be hard to remember. So how about using them where it makes sense? You know, "sunshine" becomes "$un$hin3," or something like that.

And you've probably already been told you need a different password for every account. This presents another problem. Many people either use the same password, or they keep a list of multiple passwords on their computer. But if a hacker can access your account information online, it's not a stretch to assume they can access your virtual desktop. Instead, keep a written copy of your passwords under your real desktop. They'll be easy to remember, but hard to hack.

Protecting yourself from theft can go a long way towards keeping you out of unnecessary debt. But it can't do anything to protect you from the debt you already have. If credit card companies are the ones robbing you blind, bankruptcy might be your best method of defense. A bankruptcy plan can stop foreclosure, offer an affordable way to lower debt and - in certain cases - can even discharge your debt obligations. Even better, finding out what bankruptcy can do for you is free with a complimentary personal debt analysis from a Chicago bankruptcy attorney. Because the most basic way to protect your money is to stop giving it away.

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