(Belcamp, MD — July 30, 2014) EZShield VP of Marketing & Solution Strategy Laura Bruck presented “Protecting Your Social Identity” to the Boys & Girls Clubs of Harford County to educate its youth leaders about fraud and identity theft and how they can protect against the risks.
Focusing on the 13 to 16-year-old audience and that age group’s propensity to use social networks (81 percent use at least one), Bruck highlighted the potential to have personal information compromised on social media.
The Youth Leader Academy group engaged in question and answer interaction, expressing their thoughts and opinions about personal online security. Many attendees admitted to sharing too much information online. A youth advisor interjected that phishing schemes are prevalent in both the workplace and through social media, which emphasizes the importance of being just as aware of such malicious Web links on social networks.
“This event provided a wonderful opportunity to encourage proactive personal security measures,” Bruck said. “Considering this group will soon be part of the greatest identity theft risk group of ages 18 to 24, now is the time to teach them ways to protect their information.”
Several youth members exemplified their social smarts indicating that they set their privacy settings to prevent anyone outside of their connections from viewing their posts. However, over half acknowledged that they posted their locations, especially when they travel, unknowingly allowing others to physically track them.
The presentation included a hands-on lesson in password security. Attendees enthusiastically took turns entering their passwords into a password strength-rating tool. All but a few people discovered their passwords could be hacked in as little as 0.0001 seconds. In sharp contrast, the tool estimated that one of the attendee’s passwords was so strong that it would take 2,546,476,408,336 years to crack.
As part of the wrap-up, youth leaders pledged to share with others what they learned about protecting personal information. One attendee voiced a primary take away: “Passwords are easier to crack than you think.” Overall, the event provided critical security information applicable to all ages.
The Boys & Girls Clubs of Harford County Youth Leaders Academy introduces youth to careers in human services. The program entails learning to set goals, find and maintain a job and manage personal finances. Visit HarfordYouth.org for more information.
EZShield Fraud Protection, based in Baltimore, Md., partners with financial institutions, insurance companies and benefits and warranties providers to offer comprehensive fraud and identity theft solutions to consumers and small businesses. As part of EZShield’s services to secure, monitor and restore identities, the company provides fraud protection education and news through FightingIdentityCrimes.com. For partnership and product information, visit EZShield.com.
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EZShield Fraud Protection