Posts Tagged ‘ Equifax ’

Equifax Announces Data Breach

Last week, Equifax, one of the nation’s three largest credit bureaus, disclosed that it was subject to a massive data breach, potentially impacting approximately 143 million U.S. consumers.

We’re sure you have questions. For answers, you can go to www.equifaxsecurity2017.com or call 1-866-447-7559. The Equifax call center is open every day (including weekends) from 7:00 a.m. – 1:00 a.m. Eastern time.

 A number of experts also advise consumers to place a credit freeze on their credit reports, if they believe they are at risk of identity theft. If you would like to place a security freeze on your Equifax credit information, please visit www.freeze.equifax.com and follow the instructions provided.

This is being provided for informational purposes only. Citizens Bank Minnesota is not making recommendations of action or inaction. It is important for you to consider what may be the best option for you.

Citizens Offers Identity Theft Protection

As we have seen, criminals continually find ways to steal personal information and perpetrate fraud. Citizens Bank Minnesota does offer Deluxe Provent® Identity Theft Protection service for only $4.99/month. You can enroll in this service and receive your first month FREE! To learn more about this service and to enroll, please click the link below.

Deluxe Provent® Identity Theft Protection

As always, if you have any questions please give Citizens Connection a call at
1-800-549-0194

Preserving a Precious Commodity – Your Credit Report

We all have seen commercials on TV or in the media regarding identity theft and how that impacts you and your Credit Report.  Due to our busy schedules, many folks ignore the importance of checking their credit reports on an annual basis.  Credit reports contain your personal information and history on how you pay your financial obligations.  Obligations reported about you may vary; they could include your credit card activity, payments on your car loan, your home mortgage, student loans, etc.  More importantly, they include information about “bounced checks” written by you, that have been turned over to an agency for collection, unpaid medical bills or any other account you have incurred that has been converted to judgments against you. The report also shows if you have filed for bankruptcy protection in the past.

You may ask, “Why is this important to me?” This information is used to assist a lender in determining your credit worthiness when you apply for a loan, credit card or any other credit request you may have.  It will be used to determine if you get a preferred interest rate or if you are considered a higher risk, thus demanding you to pay a higher rate.  Your credit report may be reviewed by a potential employer when you apply for employment. A poor report certainly could negatively influence their opinion of you and the possibility of being passed over for the job.  Insurance companies use a credit report to determine how you will pay your bills – the higher your credit score, the cheaper your insurance premium may be.

It is widely recognized that a great percentage of credit reports contain incorrect information or information that is not yours.  Your credit report is yours alone. You need to monitor it closely and make sure that it accurately states your history.  If there are inaccuracies, it is your responsibility to get them corrected. The reporting agencies are Equifax, Experian or Transunion. Contact any one of them for the procedures to make corrections.  You may access your credit report online at www.annualcreditreport.com.

By: Bill Brennan, Sr. Vice President

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