I was just at Home Depot this past week. Paint sticks for a craft and a new kitchen faucet and I was happily on my way with my new purchases. Normally we don’t give any thought to swiping our debit or credit card. Gone are the days when you have to carry cash for every purchase, now we just whip out a card and we are on our way with not so much as a second thought to how we paid for things.
Then security breaches hit the news. Everything from Schnuck’s grocery stores, to Target, and the latest of Home Depot. It seems that more and more we have to give a second though to using our debit or credit cards. These security breaches can wreak havoc on your credit score, your identity, and your life. Sometimes PIN numbers are even stolen and you can imagine the devastation that could leave on your bank account. Studies show that anyone who has been involved in a security breach are four times more likely to become a victim of identity theft. And data breach victims spend an average of 41 hours dealing with resolution. I don’t know about you but I can think of a million things I would rather do with 41 hours than trying to fix anything after a security breach.
Thankfully there are things you can do if you have been involved in a security breach. LifeLock shared these helpful tips after the announcement of the Home Depot security breach.
- Monitor your transactions: Keep an eye on the activity on your credit and debit card accounts, looking for any charges that are not yours.
- Report suspicious transactions immediately: If you see a card transaction—even a small one—that doesn’t look right, contact the card issuer immediately. The phone number is on the back of your card.
- Order a new debit card: If you believe your debit card number was compromised, don’t wait for fraudulent charges to start appearing on your statement. Request a new card from your bank. This way, you reduce the chances of a criminal depleting your bank account, and you avoid potential challenges in recovering your funds. Credit cards offer more protection and less risk because funds are not directly withdrawn from your bank account as they are with a debit card.
- Follow the story: Investigation of this crime is still under way. Watch for news and communication from Home Depot.
- Consider using an identity protection service: LifeLock provides identity protection products and services you can count on. In fact, with LifeLock Advantage™ and LifeLock Ultimate Plus™, we can help you detect fraudulent activity with alerts for cash withdrawals, balance transfers and large purchases within our extensive network.
LifeLock protection offers 5 points. No matter what time of day it is, LifeLock is montoring over a trillion data points. They scan for threats to your identity, and help to restore your identity if needed. LifeLock also guarantees their identity theft services and constantly track your credit score so you can sleep at night knowing you and your identity are safe.
LifeLock is also offering a 10% discount on their services. Just head over to LifeLock to sign up and use promo code BreachWatch.
Have you ever been involved in a security breach?