Equifax Breach

I think the 2017 Equifax breach is going to be a lot bigger than they are trying to make it seem. First of all, just before this happened, they were trying to lobby congress to make them less accountable for security issues like this.

Equifax put out a website to test if your information was included in the leak but I wouldn’t trust that. The first time I did it, it said mine wasn’t included. I did it again a week later and it said that I was included. I also saw a Tech Crunch story that said the site is very random, allowing someone to put in a different name and even 12345 for the SS# and it would spit out different answers each time.

Considering the US population in 2016 was 323 million, it is highly likely that every adult with a credit score is in the 143 million affected. Unfortunately, I have heard that it not only includes all personal data needed to create new accounts, but also most or all of their current credit accounts. Because of this, we need to watch our accounts like a hawk!

If you haven’t already considered a credit freeze, now might be the time.

The FTC has an Credit Freeze FAQ site here.

You can call each of the three big agencies and a smaller, lesser known company to do it:

Equifax: 1-800-685-1111
Experian: 1-888-397-3742
TransUnion: 1-888-909-8872
Innovis: 1-800-540-2505
Clicking on the links should bring you to the respective page for each company describing what needs to be done. Most will cost you a little money (to prevent bad guys from turning it off) to “unthaw” your credit if you ever need to.

The other thing I would suggest is to look into Identity Theft Insurance. We have been a customer of Zander ID Theft Insurance for a few years now. At $145 a year for a family, it may seem expensive, but as Dave Ramsey says, it could take 6 months and 200 hours of work to fix!

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