What is a Data Breach?
A data breach is a security incident where sensitive, protected, or confidential data has been viewed, stolen, or used by an unauthorized individual or entity. A data breach is also referred to as a data leak, a data spill, or an unintentional information disclosure.
Data breaches may involve personal and financial information such as credit card numbers, bank details, and social security numbers, or other information such files, documents and sensitive information.
According to the Breach Level Index, there have been 9,740,567,988 data records lost or stolen since 2013 – that’s over 9.7 billion!
How Can I Protect Myself from a Data Breach?
- Monitor your credit reports
Regularly check your credit reports as well as your credit card statements. If you have auto-payments set up with your card issuers, you still want to open your statement and review all charges.
- Set up fraud alerts
You can contact one of the three major credit reporting agencies (Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion) to place a fraud alert. Fraud alerts are free and last for 90 days. You can renew them at the end of the 90-day period.
- Set up text or email alerts
You can set up text or email alerts for your card to immediately receive alerts when a charge is made. This way you can know right away whether it is fraudulent.
- Consider using mobile payments
Mobile payments such as Apple Pay or Android Pay use a unique token, meaning your credit card information will not be transmitted through the payment card system. Because of this, you may be less susceptible to future breaches when using these payment methods.
- Follow the news
Unfortunately, data breaches are not very uncommon. You can easily find out if there has been a data breach recently by typing in “data breach” into Google News. This way you can be aware of what companies may have been affected by data breaches and know to be extra vigilant about your card card activity especially if you’ve interacted with or shopped at those companies.
At Jessica Liu Insurance Services, we take great pride in the quality of service we provide our customers. We are always ready to help whether you need assistance filing a claim, processing a payment, or just understanding your coverage and insurance needs. We want to help you meet your goals, and make sure what’s important to you is protected! Just give us a call at 415-386-2283 or send us a note at [email protected]