You may have heard about the recent cyber breach that affected the Louisiana Office of Motor Vehicles (OMV) and exposed the personal information of millions of Louisianans. If you have a state-issued driver's license, ID, or car registration, your name, address, social security number, birth date, driver's license number, and other data may have been compromised.
While there is no indication that the cyber attackers have sold, used, shared or released the OMV data, you should still take this seriously and implement some protective measures to secure your data and prevent identity theft. Here are some steps you can take right away:
**1) Freeze Your Credit and Monitor Your Credit Reports**
Freezing your credit prevents others from opening new accounts or borrowing money in your name. You can freeze and unfreeze your credit for free by contacting the three major credit bureaus online or by phone:
- Experian - 1-888-397-3742 www.experian.com/freeze
- Equifax - 1-800-685-1111 www.equifax.com/personal/credit-report-services/credit-freeze/
- TransUnion - 1-888-909-8872 www.transunion.com/credit-freeze
You should also request and review your credit reports from these agencies to look for suspicious activity.
**2) Change All Passwords and Use Multi-Factor Authentication**
As an additional precaution, consider changing all passwords for your online accounts (examples: banking, social media, and healthcare portals) in case your personal data was used to access them. Use strong and unique passwords for each account and avoid using personal information or common words. You can also use a password manager to generate and store your passwords securely.
Whenever possible, use multi-factor authentication (MFA) for your online accounts. MFA adds an extra layer of security by requiring something you know (such as a password) and something you have (such as a phone or a code) to log in. Learn more about password protection at www.CISA.gov.
**3) Protect Your Tax Refund and Returns with the Internal Revenue Service**
To prevent someone else from filing returns or receiving your federal tax refund, request an “Identity Protection Pin” from the Internal Revenue Service by signing up at: https://www.irs.gov/identity-theft-fraud-scams/get-an-identity-protection-pin or calling the IRS at 1-800-829-1040.
This pin is a six-digit number that you will need to file your tax returns electronically or on paper. It helps verify your identity and prevent fraudulent use of your social security number on tax returns.
**4) Check Your Social Security Benefits**
You should also check your social security benefits regularly to make sure no one is using your social security number to claim benefits or work income. You can create a free account at https://www.ssa.gov/myaccount/ to view your earnings history, estimated benefits, and more.
If you notice any errors or discrepancies on your social security records, report them to the Social Security Administration at 1-800-772-1213.
**5) Report Suspected Identity Theft**
If you suspect that someone has used your personal information to commit fraud or identity theft, you should report it immediately to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) at https://www.identitytheft.gov/ or 1-877-438-4338.
The FTC will help you create a personalized recovery plan and provide you with helpful resources and tips. You should also contact your financial institutions, credit card companies, and other service providers to alert them of the potential fraud and close any accounts that were opened or affected without your permission.
**How Campus Federal Can Help You Keep Your Data Secure**
At Campus Federal, we care about your financial security and well-being. That's why we offer our Fraud Defender service to help you protect your identity and credit.
Fraud Defender provides you with identity theft monitoring, credit report monitoring, and credit recovery services through our partnership with Merchants Information Solutions, Inc. For a low monthly fee, you can enjoy peace of mind knowing that your personal and financial data is being monitored and protected 24/7.
Sign up today to ensure you are protected!
Additionally, you can monitor your credit score and credit reports for free by registering for our Credit Central service within Online Banking. Credit Central gives you access to your credit score, credit report, credit monitoring alerts, and personalized tips to improve your credit.
Don't let the OMV data breach put your identity and finances at risk. Take action today and sign up for Fraud Defender and Credit Central to safeguard your data and credit with Campus Federal!(1) No data has been used or sold in Louisiana OMV data breach, according to state officials. https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/us/no-data-has-been-used-or-sold-in-louisiana-omv-data-breach-according-to-state-officials/ar-AA1cRTN0.