What You Need to Know About the Equifax Data Breach

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Are you concerned about the Equifax breach? See the FAQs below to learn more about the breach and how to protect yourself.

I’ve been hearing about the breach in the news. What exactly happened?

One of the three major credit card bureaus, Equifax, experienced a massive data breach. The hackers accessed people’s names, Social Security numbers, birth dates and addresses and in some cases driver’s license numbers. They stole credit card numbers for about 209,000 people and dispute documents with personal information for about 182,000 people.

How do I know if my Information was stolen?

If you have a credit report, odds are your information was compromised. You can visit www.equifaxsecurity2017.com to find out. If you scroll to the bottom of the page and click on “Potential Impact”, fill out a form with some information and it will provide if you’ve been affected or not. Be sure to use a secure network when submitting this personal information.

How Can I Protect Myself?

  • Enroll in Equifax’s Services

Due to the breach, Equifax is offering one year of free credit monitoring and other services, whether your information was exposed or not. You can sign up at www.equifaxsecurity2017.com.

  • Monitor Your Bank Accounts

You can also order a free copy of your credit report from all three of the credit reporting agencies at annualcreditreport.com. You are able to access a free report from of the credit bureaus one time each year.

  • Monitor Your Bank Accounts

We encourage you to monitor your financial accounts regularly for fraudulent transactions. Use online and mobile banking to keep a close eye on your accounts.

  • Watch out for scams related to the breach.

Do not trust emails that appear to come from Equifax regarding the breach. Attackers are likely to take advantage of the situation and craft sophisticated phishing emails.

Should I place a credit freeze on my files?

Before deciding to place a credit freeze on your accounts, consider your personal situation. If you might be applying for credit soon or think you might need quick credit in an emergency, it might be better to simply place a fraud alert on your files with the three major credit bureaus. A fraud alert puts a red flag on your credit report which requires businesses to take additional steps, such as contacting you by phone before opening a new account.

How do I contact the three major credit bureaus to place a freeze on my files?

Equifax: Call 800-349-9960  or visit their website by clicking here.

Experian: Call 888-397-3742  or visit their website by clicking here.

TransUnion: Call: 888-909-8872  or visit their website by clicking here.

Where can I get more information about the Equifax breach?

You can learn more directly from Equifax at www.equifaxsecurity2017.com. You can also learn more by visiting the Federal Trade Commission’s web page on the breach at https://www.consumer.ftc.gov/blog/2017/09/equifax-data-breach-what-do. To learn more about how to protect yourself after a breach, visit www.identitytheft.gov/Info-Lost-or-Stolen.

 

If you have further questions about how to protect yourself during the Equifax or any other data breach, contact us today and we can help answer your questions.

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