How Should You Respond to the Massive Computer Hack of Equifax?

By Rick Kahler via

The massive computer hack of Equifax, one of the three largest US credit reporting agencies, exposed the Social Security numbers, names, and contact information for up to 143 million of us.

How should you respond?

A lot of conflicting advice is floating around; here is what I am doing and what I would recommend:

1. Go to and enter your last name and the last six digits of your Social Security number to find out whether you are one of those potentially affected by the breach. There is a question on how accurate this is; one person entered their name as “test” and number as 123456, and was told they were affected by the breach.

2. Consider (also through enrolling in Equifax’s free one-year credit monitoring service. Starting this process put me on a waiting list to actually sign up; I have until November 7 to complete the enrollment. I will wait to sign up until more is known. The fine print of that offer initially appeared to require waiving your right to join a class action lawsuit against the company. The website now reads: “In response to consumer inquiries, we have made it clear that the arbitration clause and class action waiver included in the Equifax and TrustedID Premier terms of use does not apply to this cybersecurity incident.”

3. Monitor your bank accounts, credit card statements, and other financial information carefully for the next year. Immediately report any suspicious transactions.

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