The Equifax credit breach that was announced last month is big and scary, potentially exposing the personal data of 143 million consumers, including names, addresses, Social Security numbers, and birth dates. That's right...basically everything the bad guys need to open credit accounts pretending to be you.
The good news is that you can take steps right now to protect your good credit. Putting a security freeze on your credit accounts will prevent anyone from opening accounts in your name without your authorization.
True, this means you will have to "unfreeze" the accounts if you decide to open a new credit account and, depending upon where you live, you may have to pay a small fee at each of the big three credit bureaus, but it is (we think) a small price to pay for peace of mind. You can apply the freeze to your credit files at Equifax
, and TransUnion
using these links in just a matter of minutes from the comfort of your own home.
You will be asked a series of questions to verify your identify, and then given a PIN and confirmation that your accounts are frozen. Don't forget to record the PIN you receive which you will need to unfreeze your accounts. They WON'T give it to you if you lose it...so this step is super important!
Do it today--like right now--and sleep a bit easier toni
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