Protection in the Wake of the Equifax Breach

Posted Date 09/18/17

The data breach of Equifax, the credit data reporting agency, could affect as many as 143 million people in the US alone. The implications could be huge, so it pays to be prepared. Cybersecurity experts advise that everyone who could be potentially affected should take steps to avoid or minimize the damage as soon as possible.

First, you need to identify the damage and assess it, experts that spoke to Who.What.Why. said. In case there is damage, it could be a good idea to pick another third-party credit monitoring provider. Equifax itself offers protection services but by agreeing to use them, you would forfeit your right to sue the company. Meanwhile, freeze the compromised accounts.

Going forward, continual monitoring of credit account activities is essential in the hackers’ world. All login details need to be changed, to be on the safe side, and any suspicious activity on any of your accounts is best reported to the competent agencies. For the login details, a password management app could be a good idea, especially if the app involves multi-factor authentication.

Signing up for ID theft and credit protection is another good idea: anyone could become the target of an identity theft as long as they have a Social Security number. Besides this, follow the basic rule for cybersecurity: never open suspicious emails and do not give personal information over the phone before you verify the caller is indeed from your bank, insurance company or cable provider. To do this, call the number on your bill for the respective service.

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