It’s very likely you are one of the 145 million (and counting) Americans who had their sensitive personal information exposed due to the Equifax Data Breach. We would like to share some suggestions for how to protect yourself going forward.
It was announced in September that due to a data breach at Equifax, one of the nation’s three major credit reporting agencies (the other two are Experian and TransUnion), hackers were able to access people’s names, Social Security numbers, birth dates, addresses and in some cases driver’s license and credit card numbers. Anyone impacted by this breach is now at risk for identity theft and fraud. Criminals can use this information to open credit cards, take out loans and make purchases in your name, among other financially devastating actions.
Money expert Clark Howard has been quoted as saying this is the “worst data breach in the history of the modern era.” With a breach of this magnitude, it is too early to know just how many and who was affected by it. It’s likely that most everyone with a credit report had their information taken and the information could be used in weeks, months, or even years from now.
Here’s what you need to know including how to freeze your credit: