Digital Identity: What Is It & How Do You Protect It?
What is digital identity? How do you – whether as an individual or as a business – protect it? These are questions that more and more people are asking as our lives move increasingly online. The more time an individual spends online, the more complex and comprehensive her digital identity becomes. And, the risks of one’s identity being compromised grow as one releases more and more information. The privacy and security ramifications are significant as well for businesses who interact, directly or indirectly, with their customers online.
You know your digital identity as it relates to your Facebook profile and other social pages. But, did you know your digital identity also consists of sensitive details like your social security number, banking information, occupation, and other personal information? Every time you authenticate yourself through a company’s website, you are trusting them with your digital identity. How confident do you feel that they are doing everything in their power to protect it?
In this blog post, we will discuss digital identity in detail and explain why protecting it is so important. We will also highlight how FortifID can help businesses protect the digital identities of their customers in the event of a data breach. We’ve got a lot to cover, so let’s start by addressing a simple question – what is a digital identity in the first place?
What Is A Digital Identity?
A digital identity is the online version of your physical, “analog” identity. It includes all the information about you that exists online, including everything from social media profiles to banking information. Your digital identity also encompasses how you interact with the digital world – for example, your buying habits, what websites you visit, and even your browsing history. Your credentials, your attributes, your behaviors – all these and more can be instantiated into your digital identity.
More importantly for this topic in particular, your digital identity may consist of personal details that cannot be found on social media profiles. This may include medical history, social security information, and more. Anytime you upload these details as part of onboarding – such as to apply for a credit card, purchase health insurance, or apply for an apartment – more sensitive information is required. Many businesses end up storing this information in their database.
So why is it important to protect your digital identity and the personal data associated with it? Well, as we mentioned before, a lot of sensitive information is included in your digital identity. If this information were to fall into the wrong hands, it could be used for nefarious purposes like fraud or identity theft. In other words, if your digital identity is compromised, it could have serious real-world consequences.
Fortunately, there are steps you can take to protect your digital identity. In the next section, we will discuss a few of these in detail.
How To Protect Your Digital Identity Online
As an individual, the onus is on you to protect your digital identity. Sure, businesses are liable in case of a data breach – but ultimately, you need to be strict about who you share your personal information with. And, there are a few other things you can do to protect your digital identity. Here are some steps we recommend you take to protect your digital identity:
- Be cautious about what you share online: This one is pretty self-explanatory – be mindful about the information you share online, especially on social media. The more information you give out, the easier it is for someone to piece together your digital identity.
- Use strong passwords and two-factor authentication: Another way to protect your digital identity is by using strong passwords and two-factor authentication whenever possible. This adds an extra layer of security, making it more difficult for hackers to gain access to your accounts.
- Keep your software up to date: Another important step is to keep your software up to date. This includes things like your operating system, browser, and any plugins or extensions you use. Outdated software can be full of security vulnerabilities that hackers can exploit.
- Be careful about the websites you visit: Finally, be careful about the websites you visit. Avoid clicking on links from unknown sources, and be wary of giving out personal information on sites that don’t seem legitimate. If you’re ever unsure, it’s better to err on the side of caution.
These are just a few of the steps you can take to protect your digital identity. But what about businesses? How can they protect the digital identities of their customers?
How Businesses Can Protect Digital Identities
People should take their digital identity protection into their own hands, but this requires individuals to have the skills and tools to manage their data.. But ultimately, we rely on the businesses we share our information with to protect it. As we mentioned before, one of the biggest risks to digital identities is data breaches. When a business stores sensitive customer information in its database, it becomes a target for hackers. If a breach were to occur, all of that customer information would be at risk.
This is something that we saw play out in real time recently with Equifax. One of the biggest credit reporting agencies in the US, Equifax, experienced a data breach back in 2017 that affected over 143 million people. The hackers were able to access sensitive information like social security numbers, birthdates, and addresses. This led to major concerns about identity theft and fraud.
So how can businesses protect digital identities?
That’s where FortifID comes in. FortifID is a data authentication and privacy company that helps businesses protect the digital identity of their customers. We are on a mission to make the internet a safer place for all. Our products work by ensuring that sensitive customer information is never stored in the first place – so even if there is a data breach, the hacker won’t be able to get any of that information.
In other words, we provide businesses with the peace of mind that comes with knowing their customer’s digital identities are safe and secure. And we do all of this while maintaining the highest level of privacy.
If you’re a business owner, protecting the digital identities of your customers should be a top priority. And FortifID can help you do just that. Here are a few use cases for our digital identity protection software:
Real World Use Cases For FortifID Digital Identity Protection Software
There are a few specific types of businesses that should invest in digital identity protection. These are businesses that routinely onboard and authenticate users – relying on personal data to do so. These types of businesses include banks and other financial institutions, healthcare providers, rental companies, crypto exchanges, and more.
At FortifID, we have a few different digital identity protection products that can be tailored to the specific needs of each business. They are mainly related to digital onboarding and verification.
For example, our KYC (know your customer) solution is perfect for businesses that need to verify the identity of their users. This includes things like banks, healthcare providers, and rental companies. With our KYC solution, businesses can verify the identity of their users without ever having to store any sensitive data.
We also have a digital signature solution that is perfect for businesses that need to get documents signed electronically. This includes everything from NDAs and contracts to tax forms and loan applications. With our digital signature solution, businesses can get documents signed quickly and easily – without having to worry about the security of their customer’s digital identities.
Finally, we have a data privacy solution that is perfect for businesses that need to collect and store sensitive customer data. This includes things like crypto exchanges and healthcare providers. With our data privacy solution, businesses can collect and store sensitive data securely – without having to worry about a potential breach.
Final Thoughts On Digital Identity Protection For Businesses & Consumers Alike
Digital identity protection is important for businesses of all sizes. And FortifID can help you protect the digital identities of your customers – no matter what industry you’re in. Now that you know more about what digital identity entails, and why protecting yours (and those of your customers) is so important, there is just one thing left to do: get in touch with us at FortifID today.
With our products integrated into your processes, you can enjoy peace of mind knowing you and your customers are protected against cyber crimes. Whether you’re looking for help with online identity verification or income verification, employment verification, or even something simple like age verification – we can help you authenticate users safely and securely. Never worry about the liability of a data breach again!