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Keep secrets with these clever privacy gadgets

No matter how old you are, you know that your mother was always right. She had simple tricks to do everything from getting whites really white to saving money to protecting your family.

These days, when we talk about protecting yourself, cybersecurity is the first thing that comes to mind. There’s a good reason for that. We tell you every day about data breaches, Facebook scams, ransomware attacks and worse.

Yet, cyber isn’t the only type of crime that you should be thinking about. People just like you are victims of crimes where their belongings or money are stolen. They may be victims of violent attacks.

All of us are guilty of letting our guard down in the digital age. When you’re on your cellphone chatting with friends and texting family, it’s easy to feel safe.

You may have a false sense of safety as you’re laughing on the phone while walking through a deserted parking lot. You may forget to close your garage door when you leave the house.

These distractions can put you at risk for crimes, including the invasion of your privacy. When criminals steal your credit card, for instance, they might use it to make purchases. But their bigger payday is using your ID over and over to open other accounts and maybe even steal your tax return.

If you forget your house key at a coffee shop, criminals can easily get in when you’re not home. Once there, your Social Security number, driver’s license and other personal information are more valuable than the TV set they walk out with.

Don’t worry, though. These three gadgets will help protect your family and you. Your mom would be proud.

Bonus: Whatever you do, do not skip No. 3

1. Privacy Screen Protector

Just think about how often you type private and sensitive information into your smartphone, tablet or laptop. You type in usernames and passwords.

You type in bank account login information. You type in credit card numbers, your Social Security number, your kids’ birth dates and your home address.

It’s all there for anyone to see! If you’re in a coffee shop or on a plane, there are people all around you. You may not even notice that someone is watching every number and letter that you type in.

Fortunately, you can easily protect your privacy with a low-cost privacy screen, like Tech Armor’s 4Way Privacy Screens. These six-layer covers darken your screen from all four sides of it, so people on any side of you can’t see what you’re typing.

Tech Armor 4Way 360 Degree Privacy Screens, starting at $9.95 Tech Armor

Samsung Galaxy S5 Privacy Screen Protector 1-Pack

2. Paper Shredder

If you value your privacy, you know that shredding your documents is a critical step in protecting it. You may already have a separate trash bin at work for sensitive documents.

Those documents might be your clients’ Social Security numbers and other private information. So, you put those documents in a highly secure bin.

It’s locked and there’s only a small slit to slip in papers. It’s heavy and nearly impossible to break into. A shredding company hauls out the filled bin to an industrial shredding facility. Your clients’ information is safe.

But what about your privacy? If you don’t already have a shredder at home, get one.

Shredders, starting at about $25 on Amazon

AmazonBasics 6-Sheet Cross-Cut Paper and Credit Card Shredder

3. Security ID Protection Camouflage Tape Set

One of the easiest ways for someone to steal your idea is when you hand it to them. I know what you’re thinking: “Who would do that?”

We all do that at one time or another. Have you ever applied for a car loan? The dealership’s financing department may ask you to email pay stubs and your IRS tax return before you start shopping.

If you’re like most people, you don’t give that a second thought. You put your pay stubs on your scanner then email it to the dealership.

Have you ever sent your landlord a copy of your bank statement to prove you paid your rent? You may not even know the person you’re sharing your bank account number with.

Don’t ever do that again! The Security ID Protection Camouflage Tape Set is a low-cost, easy-to-use and effective method to protect your privacy. It works just like white-out tape, but it rolls on smooth and dry with a little camouflage design.

Your purchase comes with two rolls, each 26 feet long. Before you copy, scan or hand over a document, protect your privacy by camouflaging your important account numbers.

Camouflage Tape Set, on sale in The Komando Shop for $7.99

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3 ways to keep your kids safe online

Criminals using smart appliances to spy on you in your home

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