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Protect Yourself Against Identity Theft

By now you’ve probably heard about the Equifax Breach. We want you to make sure you’re protected from any future identity theft. Here’s a list of things you can do to help make that happen.

 

 

1. Check your free credit reports
Under federal law you are allowed to request a free copy of your credit report once a year from each of the three credit reporting agencies: Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion. You can request a copy of your credit report online at www.annualcreditreport.com.

 

2.  Put a fraud alert on your credit
You can put a fraud alert on your credit reports for free by contacting one of the credit agencies, which is required to notify the other two. This means you’ll be contacted if someone tries to apply for credit in your name. It will last for 90 days and can be renewed.

 

3.  Keep and eye on bank accounts and credit card statements
Go through all your bank, retirement, and brokerage accounts, as well as your credit card statements to look for any suspicious activity.

 

4.  Sign up for a credit monitoring or identity theft protection service
Some monitoring services include identity theft protection, which will alert you when your personal information is being used in ways that doesn’t show up on your credit report. It could monitor things like utility and cable bills, payday loan applications, and social media.

 

5.  If you’re really worried, put a freeze on your credit
This is an extreme step and might not be necessary, especially if you don’t know for sure that you’re information was compromised, or what personal information was stolen.   Fees to freeze your account vary by state, but commonly range from $5 to $10.

 

Source: http://money.cnn.com/2017/09/09/pf/what-to-do-equifax-hack/index.html?iid=EL