Perspective: A WIS editorial on the Hacking Scandal - - Columbia, South Carolina

Perspective: A WIS editorial on the Hacking Scandal

The hacking of  SC Department of Revenue's database has stunned and frightened everyone in our state.  As vulnerable as this makes us feel, the hacking scandal should also serve as a wake up call to take some personal responsibility for guarding our credit and personal information.

Here are some very specific steps YOU can take to prevent identify theft and credit fraud:

1)      Your first step should be to review monthly statements from your checking and other financial accounts. The earlier you catch an error, the easier it is to resolve it.   

2)     Next, order and review your credit reports. The three credit agencies  are required by law to provide you one free credit report a year.

3)     Shred old bank statements, applications for new credit cards and other documents that have personal information. Don't just toss them in the trash

4)     Secure your personal information online and offline. Don't carry your Social Security card in your wallet. Keep it at home with other important documents. Be careful about online passwords and change them often. And be vigilant about sharing personal information when opening new accounts online. If online advertisements or offers seem too good to be true, they probably are.

I encourage everyone to take advantage of the protective measures the State is offering after this hacking incident, but tighten up your own controls while you're at it.

That's my perspective.

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