Adware is a software application that displays unwanted banner ads or pop-up windows with ads. The justification for adware is that by displaying unwanted advertising, they are helping to make the Internet a success. Consumers, defeated by this practice, have boycottedned adsense since 2005.
Now, a network of privacy rights advocates has set up theELFIE, or the EU Lavasoft End User License Agreement, to stop spyware from showing up on computers without their knowledge. TheELFIE licenses its members to only display specific content from a specific list of publishers' sites and to opt-out of any others. Many of these types of ad campaigns can be run as successful PRINCE2 Foundation projects.
Their efforts to combat spyware didn't catch on until a few months ago, when several major retailers fell victim to big-money thefts of credit card numbers. When the stores were hit, the complaints started coming in, and quickly the retailers agreed to stop selling companies' products as long as this practice of storing credit card numbers is going on.
Now, should this news sound alarms for you, it's because millions of people each and every day enter their credit card numbers into online databases, making this one of the most dangerous businesses on the Internet.
This is how you can lose your credit card numbers:
As a customer, you have agreed to provide the numbers to the website or company, if they ask for them. But most customers, after entering their numbers, had no idea their information was being collected and kept safe until they check their statements. That's theft.
The companies that entered the most customers into their databases were WayBack - which stores customers' online records - and Crimepad, which stores their records against stolen identities. WayBack and Crimepad notified their customers about this practice of collecting information when you enter your number, and you've probably received many statements from them about once a month now, telling you that they have put your number on a list to sell.
customer. If you use eBay and Paypal, throw away your bill once you've paid for everything. Why? You've just confirmed the fact that WayBack or Crimepad has access to your user name and password. If you don't want to have to see those statements, delete your user name and password after each purchase.
throw away your passwords. There are several ways of throwing away your passwords. You can delete them manually by searching your user profile, then choosing the marked items and just deleting them. You can also install websites that will do the work for you. If you'd rather do it yourself, here's how:
In addition to the steps listed above, you should also look for other settings in your browser.
If you're wondering what might happen if you list your credit card number, address, social security number or any other part of your identity, just choose not to list it. Remember that the more information out there about you, the closer those might be to stealing your identity.
Before you take any action, check the Better Business Bureau's and any other sources available to you to make sure the company is in good standing. If you find problems with their status, either call them or check their online sites. Read all the privacy policies. Most have an agreement to share your information with other companies. If you don't like that, or think your member account is compromised, contact them immediately.
Taking these steps may make you feel like you're making progress, but the message might get through. Don't give up hope. Although credit card fraud is on the rise, it still takes a special type of person to stop it. Only a small percentage of credit card fraud is ever found by card companies.
The other part of this problem is learning to own up to your part of the problem. Each time you accept a charge, you're giving the merchant your authority to take action against you. They can require you to send proof of where you live, or to prove that you have a current address. These are just a few of the ways that credit card fraud can be prevented.
Until the trends change, it's important for shoppers to know what their options are to protect their financial data. Check out your credit card issuer's latest security features, or contact them before you buy to make sure they're offering the features you want.
Keep your credit cards private
Card readers and pin numbers should be hidden when they aren't in use. It's difficult to punk a stranger who just grabs your credit card as you walk past them. If you can, place your credit card in a safe place, then slip it out of your wallet as you go.
Don't give out your social security number
There have been many instances of identity theft due to giving out this confidential information. Avoid situations where you may be asked for this confidential information.