Attorney General Peterson Shares Tips about Data Breaches
What to Do When It Happens to You
The odds are good that it has happened to you. The recent Equifax breach has reportedly affected nearly half of the U.S. population, alongside a growing number of other significant breaches. These events prompt us all to realize we need to know what to do in the face of a data breach.
As National Cyber Security Awareness Month comes to a close, the Nebraska Attorney General’s Office offers the following reminders to both consumers and businesses that may be impacted by a data breach.
If your business has suffered a data breach, and you suspect that personal information regarding Nebraska consumers has been or may be used for an unauthorized purpose, state law requires that you provide notice to both the affected individuals and the Attorney General. Additional details may be found in Nebraska’s Financial Data Protection and Consumer Notification of Data Security Breach Act. Businesses may submit notice electronically to the Attorney General at https://protectthegoodlife.nebraska.gov/data-breach-notification or via a paper form available online.
If the breach exposed your personal information, consider taking the following steps:
Check your credit reports for suspicious activity. Visit www.annualcreditreport.com to get your free credit reports from Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion. Federal law requires each of the nationwide consumer credit reporting companies to give you one free credit report every 12 months if you request it. Accounts or activity that you do not recognize could indicate identity theft.
Actively monitor your financial statements. Promptly dispute any unauthorized charges.
Consider placing a fraud alert or security freeze on your credit report. This prohibits a credit reporting agency from releasing any information from your credit report without written authorization and makes it harder for an identity thief to access credit in your name. It does not prevent a fraudster from making charges to your existing accounts. For Nebraska residents, other than minors and those who are victims of identity theft, a $3.00 charge may be applied for placing, temporarily lifting, or removing a security freeze.
For additional details about recognizing the signs of identity theft, visit the Nebraska Attorney General’s Office Consumer Protection Division website:https://ProtectTheGoodLife.Nebraska.gov.