Sep 14, 2017

What to Do to Protect Your Personal and Financial Information

By United Capital

Your financial information is of high priority and security is important. In recent news, one of the nation’s three major credit reporting agencies, Equifax, announced last Friday a security breach of 143 million American consumers whose sensitive personal information was exposed in a data breach. The breach lasted from mid-May through July of 2017, according to Equifax.

In light of this recent news, we’ve put together actionable steps on what to do now to protect your personal and financial information.

What to do now

  • Find out if your information was exposed by referencing recommendations from Consumer Oversight Groups like The Federal Trade Commission.
  • Read the Federal Trade Commission’s latest blog post on the Equifax security breach. This is a good overall guide.
  • Check the Equifax website to see if you are one of the 143 million people affected by the breach. If you believe your personal data may have been compromised you may wish to use a credit monitoring service to make sure no one opens up new accounts in your name with your personal data. You may consider signing up for Equifax TrustedID Premier credit monitoring service offered by Equifax to all consumers for one year. Please be aware that there have been reports in the news that if you sign up with Equifax you are waiving some of your rights to take legal action against Equifax or be part of a class action lawsuit. It’s unclear on whether or not this is true or just sloppiness or ambiguous language in Equifax’s boilerplate service terms and conditions.
  • Change and strengthen the passwords on your main spending accounts.
  • Watch your main spending accounts carefully (checking and savings, credit cards, etc.) for any unusual activity.

To help you to further protect yourself, we’ve compiled some precautionary steps to make sure your information is secure for the future.

  • Check your credit reports regularly via all credit bureaus (Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion).
  • Monitor your accounts closely for charges you don't recognize.
  • Lastly, you may want to consider placing a fraud alert on your files or sign up for identity theft protection.

The United Capital team consistently reviews all of our internal procedures and processes to ensure we're doing what's right for our clients and want to assure our readers that our systems were not impacted by the Equifax breach.

United Capital Financial Advisers, LLC (United Capital) provides financial guidance and makes recommendations based on the specific needs and circumstances of each client. For clients with managed accounts, United Capital has discretionary authority over investment decisions. Investing involves risk and clients should carefully consider their own investment objectives and never rely on any single chart, graph or marketing piece to make decisions. The information contained in this blog is intended for information only, is not a recommendation, and should not be considered investment advice. Please contact your financial adviser with questions about your specific needs and circumstances. This blog is a sponsored blog created or supported by United Capital and its employees, organization or group of organizations. This blog does not accept any form of advertising, sponsorship, or paid insertions. Certain authors of our blog posts may be influenced by their background, occupation, religion, political affiliation or experience. It is important to note that the views and opinions expressed on this blog are that of the owner, and not necessarily United Capital Financial Advisers. As a Registered Investment Adviser, United Capital does not allow any testimonials on their blog, and any comments deemed as such United Capital will remove.

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