Equifax, one of the three credit reporting agencies, announced a breach involving the personal information of over 143 Million US consumers. The Equifax data breach exposed personal information that includes name, Social Security number, birthdate, and in some cases, drivers license number. A breach this large has the potential to include many Pioneer Trust Bank customers and we’re here to help in any way we can. Below are some steps you can take, specific to this incident, and others that are good practice in general.
- Keep up on the latest breach-related news and instructions from Equifax here: https://www.doj.state.or.us/media-home/news-media-releases/equifax-data-breach-need-know/
- Sign up for the credit monitoring service, if you are not already protected. Consider layering protection, even if you are currently subscribed to a monitoring service.
- Consider applying a credit freeze with all three reporting agencies.
General Good Practices
- Review your credit score annually, at no cost, and without impact to your credit score https://www.annualcreditreport.com/
- Monitor your active accounts with your existing financial institutions for fraudulent activity, such as new loans.
- Educate yourself about current threats to consumers. The FTC’s website and FAQs can be very helpful: https://www.consumer.ftc.gov/
- Practice good online habits by learning good password hygiene, how to verify websites, and how to ensure secure connections while using websites.
- Stay aware! Scammers often use breaking news stories, such as this, as opportunities to scam individuals even further. Verify phone calls and watch out for phishing emails.