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After the announcement of Equifax being hacked, the email scammers are hard at work. Below are a couple of emails I have been receiving but are SCAMS.

This one is purportedly from a place called MyOnlineCreditScores.I have received a number of these emails, but none of the links in the emails go to the MyOnlineCreditScores website:

The email below is also full of bogus links:

The point is that scammers are trying to get your personal information and/or you money. Never click on links in an email from an unknown source. Sometimes the name may be familiar but the sender’s email address is unfamiliar.

What can you do to protect yourself?

  1. Check with Equifax to see if you have been impacted. Start by clicking on the "Am I impacted?" button.
  2. Decide if you want to enroll in credit monitoring. According to Equifax, if you were indeed impacted by the breach, you can enroll in credit protection and monitoring. Once you receive a signup date for the service, you will be given the option to register for one year of credit monitoring on or after that given date.
  3. Place a security freeze* on your credit files. Keep fraudsters from opening new accounts in your name and block your credit history by applying a credit file freeze at Equifax, Experian and TransUnion. (the Equifax freeze is at no charge until November but the other two my have a small fee)
  4. Protect your money. You can activate two-factor authentication for critical financial accounts, maximize your mutual fund security, place a fraud alert on credit reports, and secure your smartphone and email. It may sound like a lot to do, but taking these steps will really help protect your finances.

*Two important points regarding security freezes you should be aware of:

  • A security freeze may not protect you from every identity fraud so be sure to check out other ways you can protect yourself.
  • If you're looking to buy a home or car, you must remove the freeze to allow financial lenders access to your credit information.

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