Data breaches are all too common. Still, it’s important to resist “breach fatigue.” Breaches don’t always lead to identity theft. But if your data has been exposed, you may be more vulnerable to fraud now and in the future. That’s why after a breach, we recommend a few simple security steps, like changing your password and locking or freezing your credit.
If you’ve recently been notified of a data breach, now’s the time to take action.
It’s important to understand that data breaches don’t always result in identity theft. But once your data is out there, it may be easier for thieves to use your personal information to file taxes, open accounts, or make purchases. In other words, you may be more vulnerable to fraud.
That’s why we’re here to help you take proactive steps to protect yourself. Read on for our guidance on what to do next.
If your financial information has been exposed…
When a data breach involves a financial account, the fallout can be serious and long lasting.
For example, thieves who have stolen names and bank account credentials could use that information to not only take over a victim’s existing account, but also to open additional accounts in their name.
So, it’s smart to take the following steps right away:
Notify your bank of possible fraud. Call your financial institution and explain what happened. From there, your bank may cancel your credit card and issue you a new one, or sign you up to receive fraud alert notifications.
Monitor your financial statements. Carefully review any statements related to the breached account and look for unexpected charges.
3 steps to take after any type of data breach
With breaches happening so frequently, it’s easy to feel exhausted and overwhelmed. But even if your financial information hasn’t been exposed, it’s important to resist “breach fatigue.”
By putting a few simple security measures in place, you can help reduce your risk of fraud and identity theft now and in the future.
After any type of data breach, we recommend the following:
Change your login credentials. Even if your full credentials weren’t leaked, it’s best to change the password on your breached account, and any other accounts that use the same credentials. Create a new password that’s long, complicated, and unique. A password manager can help. And, turn on 2FA.
Freeze or lock your credit. This helps prevent someone else from opening a line of credit in your name. If you’re a member with access to credit monitoring, it only takes a few minutes to do this in the portal. Simply log in to your account, tap Credit Monitoring, and swipe to lock your credit with TransUnion. Or, anyone can contact the credit bureaus directly to request a freeze:
Stay alert. If your contact information falls into the wrong hands, it could open the door to phishing emails, calls, and texts — which can lead to fraud. Be cautious with unsolicited messages, and think carefully before clicking links or sharing personal information.
If you’re a member and identity theft does occur, we’ve got you covered
If you’re an Allstate Identity Protection member and you do experience fraud or identity theft, we’re here for you. Here are some of the ways we can help:
Our customer care team is available 24/7.
We fully manage the remediation of identity theft. In many cases, our certified specialists can take on limited power of attorney to handle the most tedious remediation tasks, such as making phone calls and filing paperwork, on a member’s behalf.
We reimburse† many of the out-of-pocket costs associated with identity theft.
But whether you use our service or not, we hope you’ll take the necessary steps to protect yourself and your loved ones. And remember this: It can take hundreds of hours to resolve identity theft, but it only takes a few minutes to change a password.
†Identity theft insurance covering expense and stolen funds reimbursement is underwritten by American Bankers Insurance Company of Florida, an Assurant company. The description herein is a summary and intended for information purposes only and does not include all terms, conditions and exclusions of the policies described. Please refer to the actual policies for terms, conditions, and exclusions of coverage. Coverage may not be available in all jurisdictions.