3 Ways to Keep Your Information Safe When Looking For Apartments


Protecting your personal information should always be a number one thought when searching for anything online, especially when looking or applying for apartments on the internet. So much of your data goes into applications that you don't want anyone else to get a hold of.

There are plenty of ways that cybercriminals try to intimidate or threaten unsuspecting people into giving out information, but there are ways to protect yourself. This article will discuss the three best ways to keep your info safe the next time you go apartment hunting.

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1. Being Informed

Person checking a device on the wall

The best way to protect yourself from being scammed or having information stolen is to know what a scam or fake provider looks like. Researching common scammers and tactics can give you insight into a legit application and information about what isn't.

A common tactic that a hacker or scammer may use is installing ransomware onto your device. This tactic is extremely harmful as it gives the scammer full access to your device until you pay them whatever the ransom is they want.

Another tactic that, unfortunately, many suffer from is a scammer listing an apartment as available. The scammer will be rushing clients to fill their applications out as soon as possible as the property will not be available for long.

This scam allows hackers to take multiple victims' information without them knowing. Fake listings are among the most common and hurtful tactics a scammer will use on unsuspecting renters.

With how much sensitive information goes into your rental applications, such as a social insurance number, date of birth, and more, you will want to save yourself from fraud in any way possible.

Remember these red flags the next time you fill out an application to avoid fraud in the future. Suppose someone asks you to send them money before you are guaranteed or have signed a lease to the property that is a scam. If someone refuses to meet with you in person or will not give you any sort of information on who they are, that again is more than likely a scammer.


2. Keep Your Phone Safe

You're probably using your phone constantly to fill out applications while also GPSing to each apartment and keeping in touch with your possible future landlords for a viewing. If you aren't security-aware, there's a chance you could have a hacker break into your device and steal sensitive information without you even knowing.

A great way to keep your phone protected is by making sure you have a secure password to get into it. On top of the password, double authentication can provide more security. Whether a specific question or even a fingerprint scan, having that added security on top of your passcode can protect your phone from serious hacking.

It may seem a little overboard, but keeping track of your physical phone should be on your mind pretty consistently when viewing a property. Plenty of viewers get caught up in the process of it all.


With so much information being discussed and lots going on, losing your phone is easy. Making sure when you aren't using it to keep it safely in your pocket or zipped up in a bag can help prevent the misplacement of your trusted device.

Another thing to be knowledgeable about is what wifi sources you connect to, whether they are public or easily accessible. There are plenty of fake wifis that can directly link to a hacker. When using fake wifi unknowingly and filling out applications on the go, it makes it easy for hackers to access the information you are giving in the application.

Researching everything about the place you're going to, the property itself, the rental agency, or the renter will help make communication and security more manageable for you. Having this knowledge before applying or going to a property will help lessen the possibility of an online attack against you for your information.


3. Antivirus Software

Computer ladybug

Antivirus Software is not only for you but also for your landlord's benefit in protecting sensitive information. Things such as banking information, social insurance, and more are what a hacker will take. As landlords, they should have antivirus software installed as hackers and scammers will try to break into their systems to retrieve all the information from renters.

It is also a good idea for renters or people who frequent applications or search for apartments to download proper antivirus software for their protection. Running scans frequently to ensure no breaks into your software will further protect your sensitive information from being stolen or used against you.

Brian Burke, an experienced realtor, downloaded antivirus software to protect his renter's information. "I had friends of mine that are landlords get hacked for not having the proper protection. After researching and figuring out a good antivirus software for my needs, I have not run into any security breaches myself. I strongly recommend to all landlords to please protect your renter's information by using antivirus software."


Lastly, knowledge and research are beneficial in preventing your information from being stolen. Hopefully, following the steps in this article has opened your mind to be more careful on the next application you fill out and check for red flags. With these steps, you should lessen the chance of a hack into your information significantly going forward.