Equifax (one of the nation's three main credit reporting agencies) recently experienced a large-scale data breach in which the personal information of 143 million Americans was exposed.
The hackers accessed people’s names, Social Security numbers, birth dates, addresses and, in some instances, driver’s license numbers. They also stole credit card numbers for about 209,000 people.
MutualBank takes the protection and security of your personal information extremely seriously.
As your financial partner, we want to provide you with resources and actions you can take to protect yourself against identify theft. While there's no one tactic that is all encompassing, instituting a combination of measures significantly reduces your risk of identity theft and enables you to "catch" potential incidents quicker to reduce their impact.
Next steps to consider:
1. See if you were potentially impacted by the Equifax incident.
Equifax offers a free tool for you to check and see if your information was potentially exposed in their incident. They ask for your last name and the last 6 digits of your social security number to check. Before checking, we recommend to make sure you’re on a secure computer and an encrypted network connection for additional security.
View Equifax Checking Tool
2. Consider setting up fraud alerts with the three major credit reporting agencies.
Fraud alert messages notify potential credit grantors to verify your identification before extending credit in your name in case someone is using your information without your consent. Click the links below to enroll with each agency.
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3. Consider credit freezes.
A credit freeze will lock your credit files so that only companies you already do business with will have access to them. That way, if someone tries to obtain credit with your information, the lender/agency pulling your credit file will not be able to do so and the application will fail. When you need to make your credit file available, your freeze comes with a PIN number that will enable you to do so.
Note: Freezes can sometimes involve fees to initiate and lift, but NOT for Indiana residents. Any Indiana resident can request a credit freeze free of charge. There is no fee for Indiana residents to place, temporarily lift, remove or request a new password or PIN.
Freeze Instructions for Indiana Residents
4. Regularly check your credit report.
Regularly checking your credit report can help you spot suspicious activity. All Americans are entitled to one free credit report a year from all three credit reporting agencies. It's advised to spread these checks out though to once every four months.
Request Your Reports
5. Sign up for the FREE account monitoring tools we provide!
We offer many tools for our customers to monitor their account activity. In addition to security monitoring, these tools provide some convenient features to help you stay on top of your finances.
As always, if you suspect suspicious activity on any of your accounts at MutualBank, give us a call immediately at 800-382-8031.
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