Published On: September 22, 2017
Written by: Ben Atwater and Matt Malick
On September 8th, Equifax, one of three major credit reporting agencies, announced that hackers accessed their systems in one of the most widespread data breaches to date. Hackers allegedly stole names, Social Security numbers, birth dates, addresses and, in some cases, driver’s license numbers for as many as 143 million American consumers.
Understandably, a number of clients have expressed concern about the security of their Fidelity accounts and their personal credit profile.
To be clear, your investment accounts should not be specifically impacted by the Equifax hack. Credit reports don’t generally include information about assets; only liabilities like mortgages, car loans and credit cards.
Nevertheless, to protect your Fidelity accounts specifically, and your financial identity overall, we recommend the following steps:
These three steps should help avoid or at least minimize the impact of a possible identity theft. For those who wish to be more thorough, further actions are available, such as freezing your credit altogether and requesting an IRS PIN number to prevent a false tax return, but these additional steps can also be inconvenient.
As always, please contact us with questions or concerns about your specific situation.
Please visit www.atwatermalick.com/ria for full disclosure materials related to recommendations contained in this update.