Protecting Your Personal Information: Data Breaches
Sometimes, the safeguarding of our online privacy lies beyond our control. In our last two posts on digital privacy (here and here), we talked about various steps that we can take as individuals to ensure that our personal information is as protected as possible. Events that occur in the public eye are a reminder that regardless of how careful we are, the internet remains fraught with risk, and it’s important to plan for contingencies whenever we can.
It was recently reported that Simon Fraser University announced that they had suffered a cyberattack. Similarly, the Canada Revenue Agency is reported to have locked the accounts of certain users, where “an internal analysis revealed evidence that some account credentials (i.e. user IDs and passwords) may have been compromised, and may be available for use by unauthorized individuals." (source: CBC) Details around the CRA incident are scarce; however, attacks of this nature are nothing new and serve as a call to all of us to make sure that we are as protected as possible.
Update March 12, 2021: It has been reported that 800,000 CRA accounts have been locked out as a precaution due to login credentials of some users being found on the Dark Web. No accounts have been breached and this is a precautionary measure , but it underscores the importance of taking measures to protect your identity online.
Vary your passwords
One of the most important things that we can do to protect our information online is to use different passwords for different accounts. Most major web browsers have a feature that will select and store unique and secure passwords when you create a new account on a website, and there are many password managers on the market, including the one offered through TELUS Online Security Powered by NortonLifeLockT™ packages. Most will also sync stored passwords between your devices, so you don’t need to worry about remembering them. This is an easy way to ensure that if the provider of one of your accounts suffers a data breach, that your other accounts won’t be compromised as well.
Wondering if any of your emails may have been compromised? Check out haveibeenpwned.com to find out. In the event that the site says that your address has been leaked, there’s no need to panic. TELUS Online Security Powered by NortonLifeLockT™ offers continuous Dark Web Monitoring, which helps to ensure that your personal isn't being shared by any malicious third parties.
Think twice about what you share, and with whom
Cybercriminals aren’t only after your passwords. Often, the personal information that you share with a website has significant value to thieves. The first of Data Privacy Day’s three pillars is to “make informed decisions about whether or not to share your data” with online providers. Although we don’t always have the option to not share our information, be sure to only do so when it is absolutely necessary, as this will reduce your risk of being compromised in the event of a breach.
Protect yourself in the worst case scenario with TELUS Online Security Powered by Norton Lifelock™
TELUS Online Security offers comprehensive protection of your personal information as well as your identity. In situations where, despite your best efforts, your personal information has been compromised, TELUS Online Security includes the following features which help keep you protected should the unthinkable occur.
- Password Manager: Available on all subscriptions, this feature automatically prompts you to create unique and complex passwords to help protect your online accounts. This reduces your risk of falling victim to credential stuffing attacks, where compromised passwords are used to try to gain access to other accounts that may have the same username and password combination.
- Dark Web Monitoring1: Available on all subscriptions, Dark Web Monitoring keeps an eye on hard-to-reach internet forums and sites where illegally-obtained information is often bought and sold. If evidence of your personal information surfaces in one of those spaces, you are notified with instructions on what actions to take next.
- Full Service Identity Restoration and Identity Theft Restoration Reimbursement2: Available on Standard, Complete, and Ultimate subscriptions, this is what truly makes TELUS Online Security Canada’s most robust and comprehensive online security solution. In events like the breaches mentioned above, these features can provide you with added peace of mind should your information be compromised. Should you become a victim of identity theft, the Identity Theft Reimbursement is here to help. You will be covered for qualified theft-related expenses as a result of identity theft, up to the limit of your plan. Lawyers and experts will be provided up to the limit of your plan, if needed, to resolve your case2.
No one can prevent all cybercrime or identity theft.
1 - Dark Web Monitoring Powered by LifeLock™ in the Norton 360 Basic plan (without LifeLock) defaults to monitor your email address only. Log in to your Norton account to enter more information for monitoring purposes.
2 - The Identity Theft Reimbursement Coverage, with a limit of up to $25,000 for Basic Plus, up to $100,000 for Premium and up to $1 Million for Premium Plus, is underwritten and administered by American Bankers Insurance Company of Florida, an Assurant company, under group or blanket policies issued to LifeLock or its respective affiliates for the benefit of its Members. Please refer to the actual policies for terms, conditions, exclusions of coverage, and for the types of experts that may be covered for reimbursement of professional service fees. Experts not specified in the policies will not qualify for reimbursement. Coverage may not be available in all jurisdictions. Review the Summary of Benefits under the Insurance Coverage (Canada) here.
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