In recent years, computer security has gone from being an obscure technical subject to an issue that’s regularly on the minds of average Americans. In fact, there were 14.4 million victims of identity fraud in 2018, according to Javelin Strategy and Research. In order to help protect yourself from fraud and identity theft, consider these three tips.

We’ll notify you about activity that could signal potential fraud. Like if your SNN is found on Dark Websites*. Sign Up Now. *Free for everyone, even if you’re not a cardmember.

1. Know Your Credit Score

Many people only find out that they’ve become a victim of identity theft after they have had a loan application rejected. But instead of waiting until after the fact, consider being proactive by checking your credit score regularly.

The Discover Credit Scorecard* offers a free monthly credit score to everyone, not just to Discover cardmembers. This service also allows you to see the number of recent credit inquiries, number of missed payments and revolving utilization, all of which can affect your credit score.

2. Strengthen Your Passwords

It can be very difficult to manage the login information for all of your online accounts, but you still shouldn’t have simple passwords or reuse the same ones for multiple websites. Instead, try using a password manager to ensure your credentials aren’t easily stolen.

Also, consider enabling two-factor authentication that will keep your accounts safe even if your password is compromised. Two-factor authentication requires a one-time use code that’s sent to your smartphone before anyone can log in to your account from a new device.

3. Scrutinize Your Statements

While you may not be able to be 100 percent protected against identity theft, Discover cardmembers can be sure that they won’t be responsible for paying a fraudulent charge on their card.

The Fair Credit Billing Act states that credit card users have a maximum of $50 of liability in the case of fraud, and some card issuers like Discover have a $0 Fraud liability guarantee, which means you’re never responsible for unauthorized charges on your Discover card.

To help protect yourself, you have to check your statements each month and report any suspicious activities.

Cyber criminals change their tactics all the time, but by taking these four proactive steps, you can help protect yourself from fraud, and help keep your information — and your financial life — as secure as possible.

 

* Credit Scorecard Information: Credit Scorecard is provided by Discover Bank, and includes a FICO® Credit Score and other credit information. Credit Scorecard information is based on data from Experian and may differ from credit scores and credit information provided by other credit bureaus. This information is provided to you at no cost and with your consent. You must be 18 years old and a U.S. resident or a resident of America Samoa, Guam, Northern Mariana Islands, Puerto Rico or the Virgin Islands. Your Credit Scorecard will be refreshed the later of every 30-days or the next time you log in to Credit Scorecard. Discover and other lenders may use different inputs, such as a FICO® Credit Score, other credit scores and more information in credit decisions. This product may change or end in the future. FICO is a registered trademark of the Fair Isaac Corporation in the United States and other countries.

Discover credit monitoring and Social Security number alerts are offered by Discover Bank at no cost, only available online, and currently include the following services: (a) daily monitoring of your Experian® credit report and an alert when a new inquiry or account is listed on your report; (b) daily monitoring of thousands of Dark Web sites known for revealing personal information and an alert if your Social Security Number is found on such a website. This information is provided for free, as part of Discover’s Free Credit Scorecard membership to both existing and new members upon successful product registration. Alert services are based on Experian information and data which may differ from information and data at other credit bureaus. Monitoring your credit report does not impact your credit score. This benefit may change or end in the future. Discover Bank is not a credit repair organization as defined under federal or state law, including the Credit Repair Organizations Act. To see a list of Frequently Asked Questions, visit discover.com/free-credit-score.

Originally published November 19, 2017

Updated August 2, 2019.

Legal Disclaimer: This site is for educational purposes and is not a substitute for professional advice. The material on this site is not intended to provide legal, investment, or financial advice and does not indicate the availability of any Discover product or service. It does not guarantee that Discover offers or endorses a product or service. For specific advice about your unique circumstances, you may wish to consult a qualified professional.