Major Equifax Cyber Attack Impacting 143 Million AmericansSep 11, 2017
What can you do? Here is an overview of our recommendations:
- Setup Credit Monitoring: Sign up for free for Equifax's TrustedID credit monitoring service. Credit monitoring does NOT protect you from credit card fraud, this is a common misconception. What a credit monitoring service does is notify you when someone is attempting to commit Identity Fraud in your name, such as registering for a new credit card or bank loan. Some services also help you recover from Identity Theft.
- Consider a Security Freeze: This is the action that does the most to protect you. A security freeze locks your credit scores so no one can access them. This means that while your credit score is frozen no bank or financial organization (such as a credit card company) can check what your credit score is, which means no one will give you a loan or credit card. So, if a bad guys steals your identity, they can't do too much with it. The challenge is you have to manually setup a security freeze with each of the four credit bureaus. In addition, if you want to get a new loan or credit card, you then have to manually unlock your credit service. Then again, how often do you apply for a new loan or credit card?
- Monitor Financial Accounts: Watch your bank and credit card accounts carefully. Many of them have a service where they notify you (via text or email) if a bank withdraw or credit card charge is over a certain limit, or can send you daily reports of your financial activity. We highly recommend you enable at least one of these. You are looking to make sure there are no unauthorized transactions in the coming weeks.
- Be Alert to Social Engineering Attacks: Warn people that in the coming days/weeks, cyber attackers will take advantage of this incident and launch millions of phishing emails, phone calls or text messages trying to fool people.
Learn more about the incident at: https://www.nytimes.com/2017/09/07/business/equifax-cyberattack.html