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Sat Dec 16 2023

5 min read

Freelance Identity Safety : 9 Steps To Keep Yourself Self From Fraudsters

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Freelance Identity Safety

In today’s very digital world, online identity thefts are a serious concern and are at risk for several independent people. Identification fraud can harm your independent brand seriously, so here is our guide on freelance identity safety and steps that freelancers can adapt for identity safety. According to the 2019 Identity Fraud Report by the research and consultancy Javelin, more than 14.4 million people were affected by identity theft in 2018.

Unfortunately, this truth affects freelancers too. Every year, thousands of self-employed people around the world are grappling with identity fraud. Identity fraud can seriously harm the professional image in a fast-growing industry where freelancers must work hard for their credibility. The financial repercussions are, of course, more severe and cannot be overlooked either. If your online presence makes you vulnerable to identity theft, regardless of whether you’re a software developer, blogger, or web designer. But how do you deal with cybercrime when your job depends on keeping your identity online? Let us check out this article.

What is the meaning of identity theft, and how it affects the freelancing industry?

Several independent identity theft cases were publicly shared during the last decade. Identity robbery can occur almost instantly by impersonating a freelancer. After all, freelancers prefer to present themselves on the internet with a lot of information. Imagine putting years of effort into networking, pitching consumers, and creating a personal identity as an independent business in the industry, only in a single moment to sacrifice it. It may be a massive burden with far-reaching effects. As a freelancer, how can identity theft affect you?

Hackers or cyber criminals may have many implications for your freelance business:

  • A fake account could be marketed to potential fake account buyers with your information.
  • Hackers can claim to be you and work for as you.
  • They will contact your current customers and make them lose their jobs.
  • They can damage your reputation by delivering low-quality work.

Check out our post on "cyber security job description" to learn more about the qualifications and duties required for this important role.

How to maintain freelance identity safety

Here are the 9 steps to maintain and keep yourself free from fraud:

Set hard to crack passwords

 It is essential to say that passwords can be easily remembered, even though, at this stage, this is almost a no-brainer. It’s also best to retain complicated passwords for any online platform you use. Have a watch on your public information If you have a lot of visual work to do, using the Google reverse image tool is smart to find out if anyone says that you work for yourself. 

Do not get trapped in Phishing

To avoid being deceived into sharing your sensitive information, being a smart online user is essential. You should not click on questionable links or publicity, and you should only post your information on encrypted websites you trust. Unfortunately, phishing is one of the most extensive ways in which cybercriminals attack their objectives.

Have a secure system

Get a decent antivirus and firewall for viruses blocking and defending your device from spam, unwanted attention, and phishing websites.

Work on trusted platforms

When you register on various websites, your profession can seem appealing to you; pick the reputable ones. Quality websites are subject to rigorous security measures that are important to your security.

Secure on-the-go freelancing 

If you need to travel to a freelance business or are continually exploring the digital nomad lifestyle in different towns, don’t forget to use our security tips to protect your details.

Always have a check on financial transactions

Get used to your financial transfers and bank accounts regularly. This simple behavior indicates unknown or suspicious activity.

Never share your social security number 

Don’t reveal your SSN to someone unless you are expressly needed by an employer who hired you or a government official. It’s your identity; save your identity. 

Many organization may not accept a freelancing application for jobs without ssn. But, if you are apply for the top level management jobs then maybe you required a Social Security Number.

Make your profile visible on trusted platform

Although only legal websites need to be signed up yet, make sure that you are available on the critical freelancing pages. It means that you do not give an impersonator the chance to copy your profile to a popular website.

Steps to follow if you face freelancing identity theft

What do I do when someone pretends to be me already? In case of identity theft, here are a few precautions you can take immediately:

  • Inform the Freelancing Platform: If you use your details to locate your copycat account on an online platform, contact the platform and ask their team to lock your false profile.
  • File a police Complaint: Warn and file a report with the local police office. This report is useful for identity fraud monitoring. It is also helpful if you want to view your banks’ or creditors’ financial records, etc.
  • Notify the IRS: If you find a person using your identity or using your social security number, contact the IRS immediately. It would prohibit you from paying taxes on wages that you have never received.
  • Inform your clients: A thief of your identity will meet your previous clients for a job – that is why, if you confirm the robbery of your identity, please contact and let every client know. It prevents your reputation or profits from being harmed.
  • Inform your Bank: If you experience identity fraud, there is a real possibility that this may extend to undesirable transactions from your bank accounts. Contact all the financial institutions you have managed so far to let them know about the situation. You can also lock or close an account to prevent additional problems if needed.

Final words

In the best situations, the online world can be dangerous, and you can be deeply harmed if you are unspoken about cybercrimes. Therefore, having identity safety is essential to you, mainly depending on the freedom to help you survive. Our guide in freelance identity safety can help you know about the need for safety of identity and how you can maintain it on freelancing platforms, and steps that you should follow if you get in the trap of identity theft. You owe it to your customers, besides yourself. After all, they put their confidence in you, not your impersonator, when dealing with your identity thief.