9 Credit Freeze Myths Debunked

Credit Freeze

Credit can be a perplexing subject at times. Add the fear of identity theft to the matter and it becomes a downright stressful situation. If you want assistance to help keep fraudsters from infiltrating your finances, you may consider placing a credit freeze on your credit report.

Many have heard of a credit freeze, but there are still a lot of mixed messages surrounding what they are. Let’s set the facts straight and debunk some of the most notorious credit freeze myths:
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Breach News for April 2014

EZShield_BreachSummary_April2014

Organizations Impacted by a Breach in April

LocationCompany#BreachedInformation ExposedCause of BreachDate
CaliforniaKaiser Permanente5,100 Involved patients participating in specific research studies and may have compromised their names, birth dates, medical record numbers, lab results associated with research, addresses and additional medical research dataInfected with malicious software10/2011 - 02/2014
New YorkThe Rochester Housing Authority180Names and Social Security numbersEmployee errorUnknown
IowaIowa State University18,949Student ID numbersHack04/2014
IowaIowa State University29,780Social Security numbersHack04/2014
NationalLaCieUnknownCustomers’ names, addresses, email addresses, and payment card numbers and card expiration dates. LaCie website user names and passwords could also have been accessedHack03/2013 - 03/2014
TexasEveryChild, Inc2,934Patients’ birthdates, Social Security numbers, Medicaid numbers, photos and other health informationStolen computers02/2014
TennesseeUniversity Urology, Knoxville,Tenn1,144Patient names and addressesEmployee theft2013-2014
CaliforniaVeterans of Foreign Wars55,000Names, addresses, and Social Security numbersHackUnknown
NationalBigMoneyJobs.com36,800Full names, home addresses, phone numbers, email addresses, website registration information, and plaintext passwordsHack04/2014
VirginiaDeltek Inc.80,000Payment card informationHack03/2014
NationalBoxee TV158,128Names, e-mail addresses, message histories, and partially protected login credentials Hack03/2014
CaliforniaSutherland Healthcare Solutions 338,700Patients' first and last names, Social Security numbers and certain medical and billing information. Birth dates, addresses and medical diagnoses may also have been includedStolen computers08/2012 - 11/2013
MichiganMDCH2,595Names and addresses, and for some individuals, dates of birth. Of those, 1,539 records also included either a Social Security number or a Medicaid identification number.Stolen Laptop and drive01/2014
CaliforniaPalomar Health5,000 Patients' names, dates of birth, diagnoses, insurance carriers and other treatment-related information. It also included 36 patients' Medicare identification numbers,Stolen Laptop and drive03/2014
TexasSpecs8,900 Employee names, addresses,
phone numbers and
Social Security numbers
Hack10/2012 - 04/2014
TexasSpecs 550,000Bank routing
numbers card
security codes
and other
payment card
and check
information.
Hack10/2012 - 04/2014
Learn more about breaches here.

Scams in April 2014

Scams in April 2014

IRS Email Scam

What to Look For:

The Treasury Inspector General for Taxpayer Administration is warning consumers that crooks are contacting individuals posing as IRS officials claiming they owe taxes. The caller demands payment over the phone requesting payment through a debit card, wire transfer or a credit card number. If the individual does not comply with the demand for payment, the caller threatens the individual with an arrest, deportation or threatens to take away a driver’s license or business. It has been reported that thousands of victims have lost money to these tax scams. For more details on this scam visit IRS.gov.

TIPS:

  • The IRS contacts people by mail first, NOT by phone.
  • The IRS will NOT ask for payment using a prepaid debit card or wire transfer.
  • The IRS will NOT ask for a credit card over the phone.
  • If you don’t owe taxes, call and report the incident to the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration at 800-366-4484
  • If you do owe taxes, hang up and call the IRS at 800-829-1040.


 

Facebook Post Scam: FLIGHT M370 FOUND!

What to Look For:

As Flight M370 gains worldwide media attention it  becomes a “hot” topic for cyber criminals on Facebook. This is an example of how cyber criminals use media events to exploit an individual’s curiosity to trick them into opening malicious messages. The post encourages the reader to share or like it with friends and family. Once the post is shared the video of the rescue is supposed to become accessible to the reader of the post. The video is never seen and the post goes on to ask for more of your information. Cyber criminals get paid for the number of times this post is shared or liked.

TIPS:

  • If you are not familiar with the source, NEVER like or share it.
  • DELETE these types of posts immediately.
  • DO NOT fill out any requested surveys associated with these posts.
FB Scam_2

Image courtesy of Online Threat Alliance


 

Message from Your Attorney Scam

What to Look For:

The theme of this communication is that your attorney stopped by your neighbors and left you a message. The neighbor was kind enough to scan the note into an email along with an attachment that your attorney needs you to open. Here’s a sample of the scam email:

Subject: message from your attorney  Hi, there! This is your neighbor writing here. Today your attorney popped you, but you were out, so he left a message for you. I have attached the file in this email, so you can open and check everything you need. Your attorney told me it is quite urgent and as soon as you check this message you should call him back. If something is not clear, you can find the cell phone number of your attorney into the file,  so you can dial it at once Have a good night!

please call me back asap.zip (469)

Opening the attachment will release a Trojan virus into your system.

TIPS:

  • DO NOT open the attachment and DELETE the email immediately.
  • NEVER open attachments that have the extension”.zip” or “.rar”  unless you know who they are from. Cyber criminals compress their virus software into these extensions in order to bypass your PC security.