Columbia, SC (WLTX)- The South Carolina Department of Consumer Affairs is warning shoppers to think twice before clicking on deals and swiping credit and debit cards.
"In 2013 we had over a half million consumers affected by security breaches in South Carolina," said Juliana Harris.
Harris is the communications coordinator with SCDCA, she says there is always a risk of becoming a victim of identity theft but there are ways to be smarter about it.
"Instead of using your debit card maybe use your credit card because there are a lot of consumer protections attached to a credit card," said Harris.
She also warns of using your cellphone to pay bills and downloading apps that could cause viruses.
"Technology is a great think and it is moving at a rapid pace but it is important to think of your smart phone as a mini computer."
Harris offers these additional tips:
-Password protect your cellphone
-Safeguard your Personal Information
-Don't place outgoing mail in your personal mailbox
-Check your credit reports annually
-Make sure there is an "HTTPS in the web browser when entering secure information
If you believe you have become a victim of identity theft you can contact SCDA's Identity Theft Unit at 800-922-1594