Attorney General DeWine Offers Tips for T-Mobile Consumers Affected by Experian Breach
October 4, 2015 - 12:52 AM
COLUMBUS —Following news of an Experian data breach affecting
records of about 15 million T-Mobile customers and potential customers,
Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine is encouraging consumers to
guard against identity theft.
“If your information has been compromised in a data breach, it doesn’t
necessarily mean that you will be the victim of identity theft, but you
should take common-sense steps to protect yourself,” Attorney General
DeWine said. “Monitor your accounts and check your mail. If you find
signs of identity theft, contact my office for help.”
Tips for consumers affected by a data breach include:
Check your mail. Open letters you receive. Look for
notifications that you have been affected by a security breach, or for
signs of identity theft, such as unexpected bills or a card member
agreement for an account you did not open.
Monitor your bank accounts. Look for suspicious activity. If you find errors, immediately notify your bank or credit provider.
Place an initial fraud alert on your credit report.
Contact one of the three major credit reporting agencies — Experian,
Equifax, or TransUnion — to place an initial fraud alert, which will
stay on your credit report for 90 days. The alert is free and will make
it more difficult for someone to open credit in your name.
Consider placing a security freeze on your credit reports.
A security freeze helps stop imposters from opening unauthorized
accounts in your name by limiting access to your credit report. Contact
each credit reporting agency separately to place a freeze. In Ohio, a
security freeze is permanent until you lift it. You may be charged a $5
fee per credit reporting agency to place or remove a freeze.
Check your credit report. You are entitled to one
free credit report per year from each of the three major credit
reporting agencies. Visit www.annualcreditreport.com to access your
reports. You can pull all three at once, or you can stagger pulling your
reports throughout the year.
Beware of scams related to the breach. Con artists
may pose as a representative from the organization that was breached to
try to obtain your personal information. Calls claiming to provide
information about the breach may be scams.
Consumers also should look for signs of possible identity theft, which may include:
Unexpected mail about accounts you did not open.
Credit card charges you never made.
Unexpected collection calls.
Another person’s name showing up in your background check or credit report.
Credit reporting errors or a lower-than-expected credit score.
Victims of identity theft should contact the Ohio Attorney General’s Office at 800-282-0515 or www.OhioAttorneyGeneral.gov.
Attorney General DeWine’s Identity Theft Unit helps victims correct the
effects of identity theft. In its first three years, the unit received
about 3,500 complaints and helped victims clear over $1 million in
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