I have taken a big interest in securing my digital info and feel like I have addressed many typical problems. For example:

  • I've gone to full disk encryption on my android phone and linux laptop.
  • My phone requires a pattern to boot or unlock, and can be locked or wiped remotely.
  • I've started using a password manager with strong unique passwords for as many accounts as I can remember having.
  • I've studied password generating and cracking and developed some strong passwords to lock down the services I have to type manually and the password manager; and setup reminders to change them periodically.
  • I've enabled 2-factor authentication for as many websites as have it, for example Google and Amazon
  • I've made sure all my devices are up to date and setup to stay that way.

What are some similar, simple steps to take to protect one's identity?

To keep the scope of this question smaller, I'm looking for a list of technical or behavioral solutions that address common identity theft attacks; I'm not looking for answers broad enough to address phishing, social engineering attacks, physical damage/theft etc. or that are extremely onerous or that protect against extremely unlikely attacks. I'm also not worried about data collection from companies I've chosen to have a relationship with like Google, Amazon, etc; but answers about protection from personally identifiable information collected passively via device fingerprints or the like would be on topic.

I'm basically looking for the short list of dumb things not to do that unwittingly make myself vulnerable to financial or reputation damage (but mostly financial). For example, not choosing a password in the format of capitalized word + 2 digit number length <= 8.

I know this question is similar to the closed question here but I've tried to confine my question to a very specific scope.

closed as too broad by Philipp, Xander, techraf, Anders, tlng05 Jul 31 '16 at 18:57

Please edit the question to limit it to a specific problem with enough detail to identify an adequate answer. Avoid asking multiple distinct questions at once. See the How to Ask page for help clarifying this question. If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

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    There is one major thing I do not find in your listing: against what threat are you protecting you? Different people will need to protect their identity against different class of adversaries, and as long as you haven't clearly defined who are your adversaries (and I'm not talking only about this post but about your general security posture here), then you will not be able to define a suitable security. – WhiteWinterWolf Jul 28 '16 at 22:12
  • @WhiteWinterWolf I don't think I know enough about personal security to really define that. I'm not concerned with a targeted attack, where somebody sets out to use all their intellect to attack me specifically. I'm more concerned about not doing things out of ignorance that make myself an easy target. So far I've addressed "what if I lose my phone" and "what if one of the websites I use gets hacked and the password I use for everything is guessed." Maybe "what are my personal threats" is a better way to ask the question. – nexus_2006 Jul 28 '16 at 23:52
  • Get Anti-Virus software. For Linux it's NOD or AVG. And also make sure your firewall is OK for LANs. Use VPN on public WIFI. – Aria Jul 29 '16 at 1:38
  • @Aria I looked into anti virus for Linux but read so many articles that said not to bother, I have focused on things like browser attacks instead. Can you provide more information or a link, or an answer? – nexus_2006 Jul 29 '16 at 1:50
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    To give you a concrete example why defining the threat matters: for some people large corporation like Google, Apple or Microsoft are perceived as privacy invading, the goal of such people will be to limit as much as possible the control such company may have on their device. For other people, real threat come from thieves or malicious software, they consider as a precious asset that the same corporation, thanks to the data they collect, are in better position to provide them more advanced security features. As you can see, different perceived threats may lead to completely opposite measures. – WhiteWinterWolf Jul 29 '16 at 9:00