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The Equifax data breach: What you need to know.

On September 7, Equifax Inc.—one of the nation’s three major credit reporting agencies—announced a security breach of its data. According to Equifax, criminals accessed the names, Social Security numbers, birth dates, addresses, and, in some instances, driver’s license numbers of as many as 143 million U.S. consumers. In addition, credit card numbers for approximately 209,000 U.S. consumers, and certain dispute documents with personal identifying information for approximately 182,000 U.S. consumers, were accessed.

Equifax has set up a dedicated website for consumer information related to this breach. To see if your information was affected, please visit EquifaxSecurity2017.com.

Equifax is offering consumers a year of free credit monitoring and identity theft protection. In addition, the agency suggests that affected consumers consider adding fraud alerts and/or a credit freeze on their credit reports with all three credit reporting agencies. The Official Website of the Attorney General of Massachusetts provides information on security freezes and fraud alerts, so you can make an informed decision about whether to take such actions.

As always, be sure to regularly review transactions on your accounts, and let us know of any suspicious or fraudulent transactions. Also be sure to obtain and review your free credit report annually from each of the three credit reporting agencies by visiting AnnualCreditReport.com.

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