Equifax Cybersecurity Breach: What You Need To Know

 

The recent Equifax data breach that has been featured in the news this last week may impact many of us and should concern all. The breach has exposed names, addresses, telephone numbers, social security numbers, and driver license numbers for most adult Americans. This data is now available to criminals worldwide via the “dark” side of the Internet.

In response, Equifax created a web page which allegedly provides the capability to find out if you are affected by the breach (visit: https://www.equifax.com/personal/?/). However, IT professionals have tested the site, and they have discovered that various fictitious names and social security number fragments receive responses of either “you may be affected” or “you are not affected”. Therefore, it may be prudent to just assume that your information was included in the breached data and evaluate your options, if you haven’t already.

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) published information on its website last week which outlines steps you should consider in protecting yourself following this data breach. The steps range from monitoring your credit reports, as well as activity on your credit cards and bank accounts, to placing a credit freeze on your files (visit: https://www.consumer.ftc.gov/blog/2017/09/equifax-data-breach-what-do).

If you are concerned, you should freeze your credit. The FTC has provided guidance and contact information as well (visit: https://www.consumer.ftc.gov/articles/0497-credit-freeze-faqs). Please be aware that you will need to place a freeze with all three credit reporting agencies to be best protected. A small fee of $5 to $10 may apply with each agency when freezing and unfreezing your credit report.

The three credit agencies web pages are listed here for convenience:

MRA Associates Work-From-Home Policy

3/18/2020 – MRA Associates cares about the health and safety of our clients, our MRA team members and their families, and the community. As we continue to navigate this pandemic and do our part to slow the spread of COVID-19, we have implemented a work-from-home policy.

Our firm is well prepared to continue to serve, support, and advise our clients. Team members have remote access to all systems and processes to ensure continued normal business operations. Please help us to do our part by using telephone and video conferencing for meetings with us until the threat of contagion is significantly reduced.

As your trusted financial partner, we are monitoring the current economic environment, discussing approaches to short-term challenges, and developing innovative solutions. Please know that we are available to you for all of your needs and concerns. Please do not hesitate to reach out to our team if you have any questions.

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