Virtual Private Assistants and Identity Theft – What You Need to Know to Stay Safe
Summary: A virtual private assistant can be a tremendous asset for any small business or businessman. Having an independent contractor to provide administrative assistance is extremely useful, but also potentially dangerous. Outsourcing work remotely can result in information leaks and your personal details may end up in the wrong hands – there are – as with everything nowadays, some level of danger with virtual private assistant usage. The advantages of hiring a virtual PA may outweigh the negatives, but it’s crucial to learn how to protect your identity when using a virtual private assistant.
What are Virtual Assistants
Virtual private assistants are rising in popularity. According to Worldpay’s Connected Consumer Report, 55% of consumers would welcome the convenience of a personal assistant doing their shopping, but only 36% of them would give them access to payment details and other personal information. With the advent of modern technology, remote assistance has flourished. For example, services such as VOIP enable a virtual private assistant to answer your phone without the caller realising.
Why Do People Use a Virtual Private Assistant?
People hire virtual PAs for a variety of reasons, primarily to help with the running of a business or day-to-day life. Obviously, everyone has a unique situation, but a virtual assistant can easily be trained to assist with your daily needs. Here are some examples of people who require a virtual private assistant:
- With the phenomenal rise of startups, more and more people are becoming entrepreneurs and balancing work and home life can be nigh on impossible without some sort of assistance.
- Keeping up with the pace of modern life can be a daunting task for the modern businessman, so hiring a virtual PA is a great method to ensure nothing slips through the cracks.
- A busy, upwardly couple with a hectic schedule, children, property portfolio, and multiple assets will struggle to manage their affairs on their own. A virtual private assistant could easily run their daily schedules and keep everything up-to-date.
- Celebrities and public figures may hire a virtual private assistant to do their online shopping or run their social media accounts, as well as coordinate public engagements.
Keeping Your Information Secure with a Virtual Assistant
The advantages of hiring a virtual PA are obvious, but not everyone is aware of the potential for danger with virtual private assistant use. Here are some tips and strategies which can help protect your identity when using a virtual private assistant, and keep you safe from identity theft or credit card fraud:
- Don’t hand over all your work and personal details to a virtual PA immediately upon hiring them. Instead, give them only what they need to know and do not share sensitive financial info, and password managers can be used instead of handing over logins and passwords.
- Hire a lawyer to draft a non-disclosure agreement and make sure your virtual PA signs it before they start working for you. This helps prevent any confidential information from being leaked.
- When you’re getting started, be sure to keep a watchful eye on what they’re doing for you. By monitoring and observing them you can immediately notify the relevant agencies if something seems out of line. Once you have established trust, you can allow them more breathing space, but before that point it’s crucial to keep track of their activities.
- Purchase a recommended identity theft protection service which can monitor your accounts and reimburse you if you’re the victim of credit card fraud. For a nominal fee, identity theft protection software can ensure the safety of your personal information.
An Identity Theft Protection Service Keeps Your Identity Safe
Identity theft protection companies offer various services to help keep your information safe and they can protect your identity when using a virtual private assistant.
Other companies such as Identity Guard offer credit and social security number monitoring. With Identity Guard you’ll receive ID verification and account takeover alerts, as well as address change monitoring. If you think you need extra protection, you could always try Experian, the only service which scans the Dark Web globally, using proprietary technology which breaks language barriers. The scan can detect stolen data and monitor thousands of web pages, forums, and social media networks.
A virtual PA May be Essential, but be Sure to Stay Safe!
The dangers with using virtual private assistants should be self-evident, but unfortunately many people fail to realize this before it’s too late. A virtual private assistant may be essential for your business or lifestyle, but that doesn’t mean you should hand over all your passwords, credit card information, and confidential data. If you follow the tips in this article and download identity theft protection software, you will be protected online.