Data breaches are becoming a more common occurrence as hackers and scammers continue to look for ways to attach or phish information from consumers. With October being National Cyber Security month we planned to start a month of cyber security education by providing you with steps to take if you feel you have been victimized by a data breach. The steps below are provided by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC).
- Check your credit reports from Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion. Accounts or activity that you don’t recognize could indicate identity theft.
- Not related to the FTC tips but helpful to the conversation is the fact Centennial Bank’s Club Checking account is equipped with IDProtect®¹. Once you sign-up for Club Checking or switch from another account type like Freedom to Club you can access your credit reports from all 3 bureaus once every 90 days after registration while receiving continuous alerts. IDProtect®¹ as well as cell phone insurance² are available with our Club Checking account for $6.95/month along with additional benefits. Registration and activation required. See More
- Consider placing a credit freeze on your files. A credit freeze makes it harder for someone to open a new account in your name. Keep in mind that a credit freeze won’t prevent a thief from making charges to your existing accounts.
- Monitor your existing credit card and bank accounts closely for charges you don’t recognize.
- If you decide against a credit freeze, consider placing a fraud alert on your files. A fraud alert warns creditors that you may be an identity theft victim and that they should verify that anyone seeking credit in your name really is you.
- File your taxes early — as soon as you have the tax information you need, before a scammer can. Tax identity theft happens when someone uses your Social Security number to get a tax refund or a job. Respond right away to letters from the IRS.
Consumers can also visit Identitytheft.gov/databreach to learn more about protecting yourself after a data breach.
¹ IDProtect® service is a personal identity theft protection service available to personal checking account owners, their joint account owners and their eligible family members. The service is available to non-publicly traded business and their business owner(s) listed on the account and their eligible family members (service not available to employees or authorized signers who are not owners). Service is not available to a “signer” on the account who is not an account owner. Service is not available to clubs, organizations and/or churches and their members, schools and their employees/students. For revocable grantor trusts, the service is only available when a grantor is serving as a trustee and covers the grantor trustee(s) and their eligible family members. For all other fiduciary accounts, the service covers the beneficiary, who must be the primary member, and their eligible family members (Fiduciary is not covered. Family includes: Spouse, persons qualifying as domestic partner, and children under 25 years of age and parent(s) of the account holder who are residents of the same household.
² Cellular telephone bill must be paid through this account.