nothing will stop identity theft except watching everything, and not having anything go to your mailbox, or email .. (not possible)
truth is i know someone who was hit because the person who worked with them (he was a dr.) sold the info. (this person needed to have access to his info).
i didn't use my 'real' name online for the same reason... then one day while at a big competition for my daughter people kept saying "la qu" well after wondering if it was some odd startrek greeting, people were giving others for 4 days.. it hit me.. that was my online id!
at that point, after pissing a bunch of people off by ignoring them, and wondering why everyone was saying this - i switched to my real name (on facebook at least). .. though some still still call me La Qu.
I don't use a fake name, but I have several different email addresses that I use depending on the circumstance. Just be careful how you handle your personal information and who you give it to and limit personal information as much as possible.
I have a separate e-mail address and name that I use for Craigslist...that's about it.
As far as identity theft I do 2 things.
1) If purchasing online or at a place (like a restaurant) where the card has to physically leave my hand then it goes on the AMEX instead of debit.
2) I have 2 savings accounts. 1 on them is required for back-up funding of your checking account (which your debit card is tied to). That savings account has just a couple hundred in it. Enough to cover if I were to overdraw on 99% of my purchases. The other savings account has the rest of my fortune (my other couple hundred dollars).
I buy stuff online, I have had many illegals (8)use my SS# open CC and bank accounts and all kinds of stuff, thanks to employment with the Home Depot. But because of this SS has me flagged and I get free credit and identy theft watching because of the lack of goverment intelligence. I am like thelub, I use my name and CC and other stuff online at safe sites and paypal. But I have different emails for each card and for each type of transaction.
I also am too young for a paypal account. Mom doesn't trust me so the only way I can get something online is to ask the person who I am buying something if they accept checks. Kinda ironic don't cha think? So far all the people are kind enough to make an exception for me which is nice. I a couple of years I will be out into the real world with a real house and everything(including a fishroom and 2 giant outdoor ponds).
I've used the Internet and credit cards on the Internet since e commerce first began, never have had my credit card or identity stolen online. I have had my credit card duped twice, once at a jack in the box drive thru, and once at best buy (in person).
Both times my cc was duped I got a full refund. Remember you are never responsible for unauthorized purchases, they are covered under FDIC insurance, and the credit card company knows that.