February 06, 2015
You may have heard of a serious data breach at Anthem which may have exposed personal information of tens of millions of persons. This is among the most serious data breaches to date; not just because of its size but because of the type of information that was stolen.
This is different than previous well known breaches like Target or Home Depot. In those cases Debit and Credit card numbers were stolen. Card numbers can be invalidated and new cards with different numbers can be issued and the problem is contained.
In this case personal, identifiable information that can be used to steal your identity was stolen.
Name, Address, Social Security Numbers, Date of Birth are among the data believed to be stolen.
With that type of information and a fake ID, a thief could attempt to open bank accounts, borrow money or even file false income tax returns and claim illegal refunds.
Unfortunately unlike a card number that is stolen and can be replaced, you can’t just stop your life and start over, Please take this very seriously if you are notified that your data was stolen in this breach.
First monitor your statements very closely. If you stop getting statements find out why. Sometimes it is a sign that the address has been changed. Review your credit reports. By law you are entitled to ONE free credit report each year from each of the three major credit reporting agencies. The free credit reports are only available through the link www.annualcreditreport.com
Consider placing a Credit Lock on your credit report. They charge for this service but it is a good defense against anyone attempting to open an unauthorized account.
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