Consumer Protection: Data Privacy Day, Internet-Enabled Cameras And Tax ID Theft

Air Date:
Heard On The Larry Meiller Show
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January 28 marks Data Privacy Day, which aims to get consumers to think about Internet usage and what they share online. Join Larry as he learns how to protect personal information from consumer protection experts. They’ll also discuss Internet-enabled cameras and explore how to avoid Tax ID theft.

Featured in this Show

  • To Protect Personal Information, Be Aware Of Privacy Settings In Digital World

    Jan. 28 marks Data Privacy Day, an international effort with the aim of getting consumers to think about how they use the Internet, what they share and what steps they take — or maybe don’t take — to protect their personal information.

    One important step to think about in terms of protecting personal information involves passwords, according to Wisconsin-based consumer protection experts.

    “When we think first about protecting personal information, probably the most important thing is passwords,” said Sandy Chalmers, who is the administrator of the Division of Trade and Consumer Protection in the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection.

    She added that consumers need to think about having passwords that aren’t only long, but also strong. It’s also important to have unique passwords for every account.

    Another step to take when protecting personal information, Chalmers said, is to consider the privacy settings for different accounts and applications people use, ranging from Facebook to Flickr to Snapchat and more. Chalmers suggested people think about what their settings are currently, decide if they’re comfortable with them and think about just who they want to share with.

    “That’s a decision that you need to be intentional about making,” she said. “These are widely used, billions of people use these social networking applications and when you unintentionally overshare, it can be pretty catastrophic,” she said.

    Michelle Reinen, who directs the Bureau of Consumer Protection within the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection, agreed that personal information is like money to some.

    “There’s a whole underground world of individuals behind the ‘Dark Web’ … just collecting this information and turning around and selling it or using it to their own advantage to take over bank accounts, selling those identities so others can use them, getting services, medical care, they may be committing crimes in your name,” she said. “I mean there’s these categories of identity theft and the basic one is monetary, so you really need to protect your information.”

Episode Credits

  • Larry Meiller Host
  • Breann Schossow Producer
  • Sandy Chalmers Guest
  • Michelle Reinen Guest

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