New Ways to Foil Hackers and Protect Your Identity

These tools guard your smart gadgets and your identity.

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Cybersecurity was a hot topic at this year’s CES, the annual consumer electronics showcase in Las Vegas. We hit the show’s floor to find new products and services that could affect your financial life.

Smart-home guards. Internet-connected devices, from baby monitors to smart TVs, are vulnerable to hacking and malware. The Bitdefender Box 2 ($250, plus $99 annual subscription fee after the first year) and the Norton Core wireless router ($280, plus $10 monthly subscription fee after the first year) monitor your home’s connected devices for suspicious activity and provide antivirus protection.

Visual password protection. A string of letters, numbers and symbols is hard to remember. Images are easier to recall. That’s the idea behind Valt, a password-management app (available for iOS) that guides you through nine images when you sign up. To log in, you must select those pictures from a series of several images rather than enter a password.

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Connected payment card. Wallet Card stores multiple credit, debit and prepaid cards from a bank on a single payment card. If one card number is compromised, the issuer can replace it instantly using a cellular connection. Wallet Card hasn’t announced any participating U.S. banks, but partnerships may be on the way.

Lisa Gerstner
Contributing Editor, Kiplinger's Personal Finance

Lisa has spent 15 years with Kiplinger’s Personal Finance and heads up the magazine’s annual rankings of the best banks, best rewards credit cards, and financial-services firms with the best customer service. She reports on a variety of other topics, too, from retirement to health care to money concerns for millennials. She has shared her expertise as a guest on the Today Show, CNN, Fox, NPR, Cheddar and many other media outlets around the nation. Lisa graduated from Ball State University and received the school’s “Graduate of the Last Decade” award in 2014. A military spouse, she has moved around the U.S. and currently lives in the Philadelphia area with her husband and two sons.