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January 28, 2014
How secure is your personal information? Data Privacy Day empowers privacy protection

 After high-profile national data breaches, Attorney General’s Office encourages consumers to safeguard data

SEATTLE — In recognition of Data Privacy Day, the Washington Attorney General’s Office (AGO) is urging businesses and individuals to take a moment to learn how to better protect information.

January 28 is Data Privacy Day, an international effort to empower people to protect their online privacy and control their “digital footprint” — information they leave behind on the Internet that is collected by companies or other entities.

“Data flows freely in today's online world,” said Attorney General Bob Ferguson. “Everyone — from home computer users to multinational corporations — needs to be aware and vigilant about protecting personal data.”

Recent high-profile national data breaches at Target, Neiman Marcus and the United States Department of Veterans Affairs provide a good reminder of the detrimental effects of data and identity theft. Once thieves capture your data, it can be costly and time-consuming to fix — and in some cases, impossible to undo.

The AGO connects consumers and businesses with ways to safeguard information and prevent data breaches.

Tips include:

• Keep your security software current;
• Protect all devices that connect to the Internet;
• Make your passwords long and strong with a combination of capital and lowercase letters, numbers and symbols and change them periodically; and
• Think before you click on an email. If it looks suspicious, delete it or mark it as junk mail.

For more information on how to get involved with Data Privacy Day, and how to safeguard your data visit:

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