The number of companies offering Identity Theft Insurance has skyrocketed over the last year. However, before you sign up, keep in mind that whether insured or not, victims are usually not held responsible for fraudulent charges incurred by identity thieves. If you do decide to sign up here are some recommendations from the BBB:
# Check first with your insurance agent or your homeowner’s insurance company to find out if they offer identity theft insurance. Ask what they would recommend for your situation.
# Be cautious before investing money in a new product being offered by an unknown company. Make sure you are dealing with a reputable organization.
# Ask about the deductible; coverage limits (some policies place a dollar limit on retaining legal assistance or on the amount of lost wages that will be covered); and any restrictions on how the money for expenses is to be spent.
# Have a clear understanding of the services and assistance you would receive in the event of an identity theft when comparing product costs. For instance, some third party insurers reimburse out-of-pocket costs, as well as offer investigators to help victims wend their way through the process of working with creditors, law enforcement, credit bureaus and the like.
With the advent of spyware removal programs, as well as the increase of online literacy, Internet users now understand the purposes and risks of using cookies. According to a Jupiter Research study, 39% of users do so on a monthly basis. This regular “cookie tossing” is causing direct marketers to seek more invasive methods to track individuals.
One of those methods is to set a “Local Shared Object,” also known as a “Flash cookie” to track individuals. Simply put, the idea behind this tracking is to set two cookies on the user’s machine–a standard cookie that the consumer may erase, and a second Flash cookie that the user probably will keep, because the existence of Flash cookies is not well known. Flash cookies are set through a mechanism in Macromedia’s Flash MX player. According to Macromedia, 98% of computer have some version of Flash on their computers.
How can I prevent Flash cookie tracking?
Like normal cookies, Flash cookies are represented as small files on users’ computers. To prevent Flash cookies from being placed, users can adjust preferences on a per site basis in the Macromedia Website Privacy Settings Panel. To get to the settings panel, right click on any Flash movie, click settings and then advanced. Macromedia has published a walk through guide to help users disable Flash cookies.
Firefox users can use Objection, a recently developed extension that adds a LSO deletion tool to Firefox preferences.