Landlords 'should highlight risks for students'

by Sarah Ashcroft

Property owners who have seen the number of students moving into their homes in recent weeks in preparation for the start of the new academic year may want to give their tenants some friendly advice about living on their own.

This is according to Neil Munroe, external affairs director for workforce information solutions firm Equifax, who said moving into this type of accommodation may be the first time a youngster has been away from their parents - so it is vital they remain savvy.

The expert noted looking after their personal data is one of the most important things students can do, as it can be extremely easy for fraudsters to get hold of details when individuals are signing up to websites or other online services using their laptop.

Mr Munroe argued one problem for youngsters is the unfamiliarity of being away from home and starting out on their own at university, while highlighting the importance of educating people about the importance of data and the damage it can cause when falling into the wrong hands.

For this reason, landlords may want to take action to help young people protect themselves from this type of illegal activity - as the lifestyles they often lead can present good opportunities for criminals.

One of the most important things students can do to prevent falling victim to crime is to protect their personal computers with a password, as well as securing smartphones due to the amount of financial applications they can hold.

"Secure the device as much as you can and also make sure that you are not going into sites or responding to emails that mean people can start tracking your information," Mr Munroe added.

"Most students think they haven't got any money so won't be picked on, but the point of the matter is it isn't the money they are after. It's your details they are after. They are after the data they can use to create money."

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Published on: September 19, 2012

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