Hot topic of the month: what to do after your data is compromised
As data breaches become more common, it’s impossible to protect all your personal information from being exposed by criminals, especially if you trust it to a third party. Regardless of whether it’s a large corporation, a government agency, or your local supermarket, any information you share is only as safe as that organization’s weakest link.
Here are some steps to take if you discover your personal information has been compromised.
Change your passwords
Passwords should be changed on a regular basis but it’s especially important to do so after a breach. Use long, secure and unique passwords. It’s also important to not use the same password for multiple accounts. Password managers can be useful to keep track of your different access credentials. Read more
Use two-factor authentication - 2FA
Two factor authentication (2FA) adds an extra layer of security because it requires your password as well as another code, which could come from a text message or authentication app, in order to access the account. Read more
Look out for updates from the breached company
Companies that experience a data breach often post updates for affected customers, so look out for information related to what has happened, both on the company’s website and/or via email on what to do next.
Keep an eye on your accounts and credit reports
After being compromised, you should pay extra attention to your account activities and credit report for suspicious activity. Consider subscribing to identity theft protection services.
Freeze your credit
Consider contacting the main credit bureaus to freeze your credit, which will ensure that even if ID thieves have all your information, they will not be able to open new lines of credit in your name.