Equifax Breach–What You Need to Know
In September, Equifax announced it fell prey to a data breach, which affects 145.5 million U.S. consumers. If you are engaging with SSR from an IT security standpoint, you know we are vigilant in keeping security measures in place to help prevent cyber-attacks. From the workplace to personal computing, we want to help you mitigate the risks associated with cyber-security. To that end, we are sharing some tips to help you protect yourself from identity theft given the recent Equifax breach.
The data breach included names, addresses, birth dates, Social Security numbers, driver’s license numbers, and credit card numbers, so it is of utmost importance to see if you were affected and what you can do to protect yourself and your family.
Here are some steps to take and additional resources to review:
- Determine If Your Information Was Part of the Breach
Visit equifaxsecurity2017.com ASAP to determine if your data was compromised. Click on the “Am I Impacted” button mid-way down the page and enter your last name and the last six digits of your social security number. Please make sure you are on a secure computer with an encrypted network connection to further protect your personal information.
- Sign Up for a Year of Free Credit Monitoring
At no cost to you, Equifax is providing a year of credit and identity monitoring and identify theft insurance, called TrustedID Premier. You may enroll in this program whether you have been impacted by this specific breach or not. The enrollment period ends on January 31, 2018. Visit equifaxsecurity2017.com to enroll.
- Check Your Credit Reports & Monitor Your Bank Accounts
Visit annualcreditreport.com to check your credit report with Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion. There is no cost to do this and it will allow you to see if there has been any fraudulent activity. In addition, monitor your bank and credit card account statements on a weekly basis.
- Get Recommendations from Your Bank or Other Trusted Financial Advisor
Contact your bank for additional instructions or recommendations, such as authentication features your bank might be able to add to your accounts. You may also want to set up a credit freeze and/or fraud alert. To learn more about credit freezes, visit: https://www.consumer.ftc.gov/articles/0497-credit-freeze-faqs.
For information on fraud alerts, visit: https://www.consumer.ftc.gov/articles/0275-place-fraud-alert.
Equifax is taking measures to help prevent this from happening in the future. This also serves as a good reminder for us all to monitor our credit reports, credit card statements, and bank accounts on a regular basis.
For information about how your organization can help protect itself from security threats, visit: