5 Tips to Protect Yourself From The Equifax Data Breach

Equifax data breach: The Equifax data breach is one of the largest data breaches in recent history, but it’s not the only one.

As a result of this breach, hackers gained access to personal information, such as social security numbers, birth dates, and addresses.
In response to the growing number of cyber attacks on consumers and businesses alike, many people are now more aware than ever before about how they can protect themselves from identity theft and data breaches.

However, with so much information available online and so many guides out there on how to stay safe online and protect your data, it’s natural that some of these tips get lost in translation.

To prevent you from being another victim of the Equifax breach or any other cyber attack in future, we’ve compiled a list of 5 essential tips for protecting yourself from a data breach:

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5 Tips to Protect Yourself From The Equifax Data Breach

Equifax data breach: BusinessHAB.com

New reporting from the Wall Street Journal indicates that hackers may have accessed the personal information of as many as 143 million U.S. consumers through the Equifax website. That’s nearly half of all adults in America! The breach is thought to have started in May 2017, and extended into June. In other words, for about a month and a half, any user who signed up for Equifax services was offered an opportunity to give them access to even more personal information than usual. The hackers took advantage of this opportunity and accessed company servers. While there is still no word on what data they managed to steal, it seems likely that this breach will affect more than just credit card numbers as it did with previous hacks.

What to do now

There is no way of knowing how many people were affected, or what data was stolen. This means that it’s difficult to know how to protect yourself beyond the basic advice of monitoring your credit report and being careful where you store personal information. It’s also worth noting that the FTC has announced that they will be investigating the breach, so we may see stricter regulation around these types of data breaches in the future. Beyond that, there is little in the way of concrete steps you can take right now beyond taking basic precautions with your data. But as soon as new information comes to light, it’s important to take action as soon as possible and follow the advice provided below.

Freeze Your Credit

One of the most important steps you can take right now is to freeze your credit. This will prevent anyone from accessing your credit report and therefore make it difficult for them to open new lines of credit in your name. You can do this online through the official government site. There’s also a chance that freezing your credit could help you avoid any issues caused by this breach. This is because it will prevent anyone from obtaining new credit in your name, including you! So if the data that was stolen from Equifax is used to open a new line of credit, it will be ignored. This is because credit bureaus will see that the information provided doesn’t match what is already on file. This is a good thing because it will help you spot any fraud as soon as it happens. However, it’s important to remember that freezing your credit doesn’t protect you against fraud, it just makes it harder for the perpetrator to use your stolen data to open new lines of credit.

Change Your Passwords

This is one of the most basic steps, but it’s also one of the most effective. Hackers often gain access to systems by exploiting vulnerabilities in outdated software applications. Therefore, the most important thing you can do to protect yourself is to change your passwords. Beyond that, it’s also a good idea to enable two-factor authentication (2FA) on all accounts that support it. This will make it much harder for hackers to access your accounts even if they gain access to your login credentials. It is important to note that you should change all of your passwords, not just those associated with Equifax. You should change the passwords for all of your online accounts, including email, social media, banking, and the like.

Review Your Credit Report

This may seem like an odd thing to do in light of a data breach, but it’s actually a very smart move. In fact, it’s something that you should do regularly (about once every four months) regardless of whether or not there has been a breach. Credit reporting companies such as Equifax maintain records of your credit history, and they report these to lenders as a way of determining who should receive favorable interest rates and who should be charged higher rates. This makes your credit report extremely important, and it’s a good idea to review your report regularly to ensure that everything is accurate. If you do notice something on your report that you think is incorrect, you have the right to dispute it.

Be Careful Where You Store Personal Information

Beyond changing your passwords and regularly reviewing your credit report, you should also make an effort to store as little personal information as possible. Credit bureaus like Equifax make money by selling information about you to lenders and investors. If you make an effort to avoid giving them information to sell, they will make less money, and therefore have less incentive to collect it in the first place. There are many ways to do this, but one of the easiest is to use a burner email address when signing up for websites or apps that don’t necessarily require your real information. Beyond that, you can also consider using a virtual private network (VPN) to hide your IP address and prevent data from companies like Equifax from being collected in the first place.

Protect Yourself With A VPN

We’ve written extensively about the benefits of using a VPN, and we encourage everyone to protect their data with one. Beyond that, however, VPNs will also help you protect yourself against the Equifax data breach. First, by hiding your IP address, you can make it harder for third parties to determine where you are actually located. This can help prevent data brokers from collecting your information in the first place. Beyond that, VPNs can also help you access websites that may be blocked from your country due to various factors outside of your control. For example, when the Equifax website was hacked, many people in the U.S. found that they were unable to access it. However, by connecting to a VPN server in the U.S., you can access the website as if you were physically located there. This can help prevent you from being affected by the breach.


No one can predict the future, but there are a few things we can be sure of. We know that data breaches happen, and they happen all the time. We also know that there’s nothing we can do to stop them. However, we can take steps to minimize the damage caused by these breaches by taking basic precautions with our data and protecting ourselves with a VPN.

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