We say You CAN Wear WHITE After Labor Day!

As fashion rules go, the old “don’t wear white after Labor Day” mantra is going by the wayside, and the Identity Theft Resource Center couldn’t be happier. Why? Because they’ve got some “Wear Your WHITE” rules that are perfect all year long!

 It’s important to take your security into your own hands. We suggest wearing W.H.I.T.E. after Labor Day with these tips: 

W is for Wonder Where Your Data Goes – Do you stop to ask where your personal identifiable information will end up before you hand it over? Whether it’s an online form, a doctor’s office clipboard, your child’s school, or any other location that requests sensitive data, it’s important to ask questions about security before you turn over your info: How will it be stored and protected? Who will be able to access it? 

H is for Hang Up on Scammers – While we’re ignoring some silly rules about clothing, here’s another rule you can break: you don’t have to talk to every single person who calls you! If you receive annoying sales calls or robocalls, feel free to hang up. You might just be pulling the plug on a scammer. There’s never any reason to be rude, but you certainly don’t have to answer a call from an unknown number or stay on the phone with someone who tries to get you to “verify your information,” pay a made-up fee or fine, or any other common scam. 

I is for Ignore Phishing Emails – It’s really important that all tech users ignore those phishing emails. It might be a Nigerian prince with money to give you, a lonely person looking for love (who somehow happened to have YOUR email address), or a phony message from your “boss,” telling you to change a password, transfer money into a new account, or send over important files. It’s a good idea to ignore these emails—even without opening them, if you can tell there’s a fake address attached—and you should make it a policy to ignore any sensitive email request without verbal confirmation.

T is for Tighten Up your Password Security – Take a little time this coming week to change your passwords on important accounts, like your email, online banking, credit card login, or major retail accounts. Making strong passwords can help you stay one step ahead of hackers who may have stolen access to databases of old login credentials. 

E is for Empty your Inbox – If you’ve got stored up messages in your email inbox or your phone, it’s a good idea to clean those out from time to time. Regularly discarding old emails and texts can help prevent information from getting out there if your account is taken over or if your physical device is lost or stolen. Besides, they’re just taking up space for no reason! 

If you’ll making wearing this WHITE part of your identity and cybersecurity protection all year long, you may be able to reduce your risk of becoming a victim.

Contact the Identity Theft Resource Center for toll-free, no-cost assistance at (888) 400-5530. For on-the-go assistance, check out the free ID Theft Help App from ITRC.

Read next: A Closer Look at your Apps’ Permissions

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