Target and several other retailers recently were victims of data breaches over the holidays. What should you do?
- If you used plastic at any of them, especially at Target, monitor your account daily by logging in online to check out if there any unauthorized charges on your cards.
- Accept the credit monitoring service your card offers, but only if it is a legitimate offer; be careful with emails that could be trolling for personal information. Through various breaches my wife and I have had over the years, we have had the monitoring service free, but we’ve never had an unauthorized use or an ID theft.
- Notify your bank and tell them what is going on; they may issue you a new card.
- Change your personal identification number (PIN).
- If you are sure your account has been compromised, you may want to freeze the account for 90 days.
- If your credit card information has been stolen, such as at a local retailer or from your purse or wallet, call the police and file a report. This may be necessary to get your money back from your bank.
What should you do to protect yourself from credit card information theft? See the next article.