Concerned about the Equifax cyberattack? Here are our recommendations.

The recent data breach at Equifax, one of three major U.S. credit bureaus, reportedly compromised the personal information of as many as 143 million Americans — including names, Social Security numbers, birth dates, physical addresses, driver's license numbers, as well as credit card numbers and other personal identifying information.

Here are things you can do to help protect your private information and safeguard your Allsteel Credit Union accounts:

  • Routinely monitor your existing credit card and credit union/bank accounts. Allsteel Credit Union Online Banking and Mobile Banking permit you to frequently monitor your deposit and loan accounts. Also, you can set up an array of alerts in Online Banking. If you detect an unauthorized transaction, call the credit union at 630.906.2050 or visit our office immediately.
  • Check your credit report closely. All Americans are entitled by law to one free credit report every year from each of the three major credit bureaus. Visit annualcreditreport.com to request your copy from each bureau. Experts suggest spreading these out over the year by getting one report once every four months. If you suspect fraudulent activity, report it immediately:
  • Consider placing a freeze on your credit report. A credit freeze prevents access by potential creditors to your credit report, making it difficult for identity thieves to open new accounts in your name. To request a credit freeze, contact each credit bureau separately. You may be charged a fee to freeze your account (typically $5 or $10). You'll be supplied a PIN or password that will be required to remove a freeze. The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) offers important information about credit freezes and fraud alerts here.
  • If you don’t freeze your credit, consider setting up a fraud alert. A fraud alert allows creditors to get a copy of your credit report as long as they take steps to verify your identity. Contact any of the credit bureaus above to place a fraud alert on your credit reports — it’s easy and free. Whichever bureau you contact must inform the other credit bureaus — and they'll also place an alert on their versions of your report.
  • Beware of scams related to the breach. Such ploys from cyber criminals include phone calls, emails and texts that use news of the widely publicized breach to try to trick you into sharing private information. The FTC released an alert on phishing attacks related to the Equifax breach, warning consumers to be wary of calls or emails purporting to be from Equifax agents (legitimate Equifax representatives will not contact consumers to request verification of their information).
  • File your taxes early. Early filing reduces the chances that a cyber criminal can use your Social Security number to claim a tax refund and steal your money.
  • If you think you're a victim of identity theft, visit https://www.identitytheft.gov. This site, created by the FTC, provides valuable information to help consumers report and recover from identity theft.

Be assured that we employ the latest technology and sophisticated encryption methods to protect your accounts and personal information. We closely monitor activity on credit cards issued by us to help spot fraudulent activity. Also, Allsteel Credit Union credit cards feature the Visa® Zero Liability Policy that protects you from financial liability due to unauthorized use.

As always, we’re here to answer your questions and help you protect your identity and money in every way possible.