Ferguson, AARP warn Washingtonians to protect themselves against digital scams

Ferguson, AARP warn Washingtonians to protect themselves against digital scams

Hundreds of folks turned out to hear Washington’s Attorney General Bob Ferguson and other scam experts speak at the AARP’s “Taking Charge of Your Digital Identity” event.

The event took place as the AARP announced new survey results that more than six out of ten Washingtonians failed a quiz testing their digital identity IQ.

“When it comes to data breaches they are increasing,” said AG Ferguson. “Our estimates are that millions of Washingtonians have had their personal information compromised in the last year.”

He says that because much of our personal information is already out there on the web, folks should take precautions to make sure they aren’t taken advantage of by bad actors.

“Our information is out there, bank records, social security numbers,” he said. “We really want to encourage folks to monitor their credit card bill, their bank records, to make sure nothing has been compromised.”

For those that feel they may have been victim to a digital scam, he says don’t wait, call his office immediately to find out their options. He also wants to remind folks that freezing your credit is now free.

The head of AARP Washington, Doug Schadel, also warns folks to not use the same password for multiple accounts.

He says that though many folks have wised up to not clicking on fake bank phishing scams, they aren’t quite as savvy when it comes to phishing scams that target other accounts like Netflix.

“If you use the same password for both your bank account and of your other lower accounts, now they have both,” said Schadel.

He recommends folks use a password manager, one that can come up with and store more complex passwords for you.

“It’s so much easier to get people’s information,” he says. “Our information is all over the place.”

He says it’s much easier to be proactive rather than reactive to combat digital scams but says most folks aren’t.

Of the top three safety measures the AARP recommends to folks, fewer than 50 percent of people actually follow them.

Click here to go to the AARP website.