Over the holidays, we were right in the throws of the Target breach. Everyone had just finished their holiday shopping, and instead of just worrying about the bills they ran up, they needed to worry about bills a complete stranger could ring up and leave for them to deal with.
How worried did consumers need to be?
When the announcement first came out, Target had 40 million customers’ credit and debit card information breached. But what does that mean? It means that consumers are at risk of fraud. So anyone who shopped at Target (November 27 – December 15) needs to be diligent about watching their credit card statements and immediately report any signs of fraud. A service like Internet Monitoring can be helpful if that information was then traded on the black market. And, of course, many banks were proactive and canceled credit and debit cards and replaced them to avoid the risk of fraud.
Several weeks after the initial announcement, Target discovered that the exposure was much greater, and it was not only credit card information, but personal information as well: name, address, etc. That means that the thieves have enough information to steal your identity and go beyond fraud to commit identity theft. Thieves can open new accounts in your name, threatening your credit. So monitoring your credit report becomes an important option.
At EZShield, we believe that the education and understanding of identity crimes are key elements in prevention. That is what prompted us to develop www.fightingidentitycrimes.com as a resource for you and your customers to better understand identity fraud and identity theft, and to keep up with the latest in breaches, scam and more. All focused on staying ahead of the problems.
Check out the site, www.fightindentitycrimes.com, and let us know what identity crime topics you would like to see covered.